U.S. CITES 50 FOR FAKES: The U.S. has singled out 50 countries that failed to adequately enforce intellectual property protection and counterfeit products, including apparel, and listed them in an annual report. Among the countries on the U.S. Trade Representative’s "watch list" is the Ukraine, which was designated a "priority foreign country," for having the most "onerous or egregious policies." Sanctions worth $75 million imposed in January 2002 on Ukrainian products, including higher duties on footwear and diamonds, will remain in place due to the country’s failure to take effective action against optical media piracy. The Philippines, Pakistan, Vietnam and Turkey also were put on the list for failing to crack down on counterfeit apparel, among other items.

SIMON, BUT HARDLY SIMPLE: A federal judge ruled late Thursday that Taubman family and affiliated parties cannot vote their Series B preferred shares for or against Simon Property Group’s hostile takeover bid for Taubman Centers without first getting approval to do so from public shareholders. About 85 percent of public shareholders have agreed to accept Simon’s $20 a share offer, but that number would be inadequate to approve the bid, which expires May 30, unless the preferred shares are disallowed. Complicating matters further, some of the disqualified shares may be reinstated if they can be shown to be held before Robert Taubman entered into certain voting agreements that have been voided by the court.

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