Special 301 Report: USTR again places India Priority Watch List

The Office of United States (US) Trade Representative (USTR) has once again placed India on ‘Priority Watch List’ in its annual Special 301 Report on the state of intellectual property protection.  In 2018 Special 301 Report, the USTR has placed 12 countries on its Priority Watch List.  Special 301 Report identifies US trading partners that do not adequately or effectively protect and enforce IP rights or deny market access to its innovators and creators that rely on protection of their IP rights.

Key Facts

Other countries on list are Algeria, Argentina, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Indonesia, Kuwait, Russia, Ukraine, and Venezuela. IP issues in these countries will be subject of intense bilateral engagement during coming year.

According to it, India remains the list for its long-standing challenges in its IP framework and lack of sufficient measurable improvements, particularly with respect to patents, copyrights, trade secrets, and enforcement, as well as for new issues that have negatively affected US right holders over the past year.

India remains one of world’s most challenging major economies with respect to protection and enforcement of intellectual property. India’s enforcement action and policies are insufficient to curb problem, copyright policies that do not properly incentivise creation and commercialisation of content and outdated and insufficient trade secrets legal framework.

It has slammed Health Ministry of India for creating uncertainty in pharmaceutical market by demanding that pharmaceutical companies provide details of how they were using the granted patents. It has urged India to join important international treaties and agreements that could improve aspects of India’s IP regime.

PHDCCI, Indian Yoga Association sign MoU to promote cultural tourism in Krishna Circuit

The PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI) and Indian Yoga Association (IYA) have signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to facilitate interaction and cooperation between two organisations to promote wellness, spiritual and cultural tourism in Krishna Circuit.

Krishna Circuit

Government is trying to promote Krishna circuit as major tourist attraction under Swadesh Darshan Scheme. It is named after Lord Krishna and is centered on him. Under it, 12 destinations spread across five states have been proposed. They will be developed on principles of high tourist value, competitiveness and sustainability in an integrated manner. The destinations covered are Gujarat: Dwarka; Rajasthan: Nathdwara, Jaipur and Sikar; Uttar Pradesh: Mathura, Vrindavan, Barsana, Gokul, Nandgaon and Govardhan; Odisha.

Key Facts

Under this MoU, PHDCCI and IYA have joined hands to provide holistic tourism experience to domestic and international travellers looking for some spiritually invigorating and cultural experiences. PHDCCI has been frontrunner in the wellness, spiritual, knowledge and health sectors. It is committed to bringing about effective changes in management, innovation and proactive development of strategies and strengthening linkages for advancement through partnerships with like-minded organisations,