WASHINGTON — The U.S. and China are making progress in the fight against intellectual property theft.
The two countries signed a memorandum of understanding to provide a technical assistance program to Chinese IP agencies with the aim of strengthening enforcement on counterfeit and digital piracy activities, as the two sides finished a high-level dialogue in Beijing on Friday.
U.S. trade officials said they signed a number of agreements with the Chinese at the close of the two-day U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade, ranging from intellectual property enforcement to expanding travel and tourism from China to the U.S.
“The JCCT results build on the progress made during Vice President Biden’s recent visit, as well as positive announcements resulting from China’s Third Plenum on promoting the reform and opening of China’s economy,” said U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman. “We still face many challenges, but the JCCT offers us a key tool for resolving important trade and investment issues.” Froman attended the meetings in Beijing with U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker and U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.
The U.S. Trade and Development Agency signed the memorandum of understanding on intellectual property with the Chinese Ministry of Commerce. Under the agreement, a technical assistance program will be established to help Chinese agencies strengthen their enforcement and protection of intellectual property rights and adopt and maintain nondiscriminatory policies. The program will provide four workshops and one two- to three-week U.S.-based training program and supplement three other workshops and two additional U.S. study visits that will be coordinated by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
“The goal of this MOU is to increase the capacity and commitment of Chinese government agencies, courts and legislature to ensuring that IP is adequately protected and enforced,” a USTR fact sheet stated.
China continues to be the number-one source of counterfeit and pirated goods. In fiscal year 2012, U.S. authorities seized $906 million worth of counterfeit products, accounting for 72 percent of the total value of all seized goods, according to the most recent U.S. government data.
Counterfeit handbags and wallet seizures were by far the largest category, with U.S. authorities seizing $511 million worth of bogus items in that category. Of the approximately $511 million in handbags and wallets seized, more than $446 million came from China, about 87.3 percent of the total. China is also the main manufacturing hub for counterfeit apparel. Federal officials seized $133 million worth of counterfeit apparel in fiscal 2012.
In separate trade news, President Obama announced his intent on Friday to nominate Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D., Mont.) as ambassador to China.
Baucus, who has served in the Senate for 36 years, said he would not seek reelection next year. If confirmed by the Senate, Baucus would succeed the current ambassador, Gary Locke, who is stepping down early next year.
During his tenure, Baucus has been closely involved in trade issues, some of which caused friction with China. He has also criticized China for manipulating its currency and joined other senators in sponsoring legislation that would have penalized China if it did not boost the value of its currency, although the bill stalled in Congress and was never enacted.
My character, Dinah Madani, is just the coolest, [most] badass woman imaginable," says @amberroserevah. The actress stars in @marvel's newest series on @netflix, @thepunisher. To prepare for her role, Revah sat down with Homeland agents to get a real sense of with Dinah's day-to-day life is really like. Read our full interview on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
A scene from the 91st annual @macys Thanksgiving Day Parade. The parade, which boasts 50 million TV viewers and 3.5 million on-site spectators, is considered one of the largest and most watched parades in the world. (📷: Jason Szenes/EPA-REX)
The circus came to @bloomingdales 59th Street on Tuesday night and lit up Lexington Avenue with acrobatic dancers, death-defying knife throwing, sword swallowing and aerial acts with no net. The 45 minutes of theatrics built up to unveiling the holiday windows depicting @swarovski crystal-encrusted circus pieces and scenes from “The Greatest Showman” – songs from the soundtrack included. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Joshua Scott)
The psychedelic fashion that pervaded the ’60s is back with an exhibit at the @museumofcityny. “Mode New York: Fashion Takes a Trip” chronicles the changing styles from 1960 through 1973 and features designers such as @ysl, @oscardelarenta and more. The exhibition, which is on display through April 1, is organized into four periods: First Lady Fasion, Youthquake, New Bohemia and New Nonchalance. Pictured here is model Pat Bardonella during the Garvey Day Parade in 1968. (📷: @kwamebphoto) #wwdeye #wwdfashion
“People should be a lot more honest in expressing both the dark and light of themselves. We need to give each other the space to do that because it’s the only way we can grow and evolve,” says @noelwells of her new film “Mr. Roosevelt,” which is largely based on her own struggles. Unexpectedly leaving @nbcsnl in 2014 after just one season, Wells felt set back in her self-esteem and career trajectory. She quickly refocused her energy to more personal projects, which led to the completion of “Mr. Roosevelt.” Read the rest of WWD’s interview with the “Master of None” actress on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
@barbrastreisand is giving fans a chance to see her perform up close in a new concert series, which makes its debut on @Netflix today. From behind-the-scenes takes to her concert performance in Miami last December, the two-hour streaming special captures Streisand in her element. Pictured here is the singer/actress photographed for WWD in 1963. (📷: Palmieri Tony) #wwdeye #wwdarchive
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)