Thursday, 11 March 2010

Anti-Counterfeit Trade Agreement – the EU Parliament’s view

Yesterday the EU Parliament voted in favour of a demand to be kept fully informed about the secretive Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) which is being negotiated by the EU, Mexico, Japan, and the US among others (early blog here).

Since the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, "the Commission has had a legal obligation to inform Parliament immediately and fully at all stages of international negotiations". Therefore the confidentiality clause that the negotiating parties have agreed upon appears to extend, as in the case of the EU, to include the Parliament.

I would not say that this is a step back for the ACTA. I believe that this is a wakeup call over the lack of transparency in the negotiations.

The Ministries for the European Parliament call also for an evaluation to be carried out with regard to fundamental rights and data protection. They also disagree with the so-called ‘three-strikes’ procedures where internet users can lose their internet access as penalty for three infringements of online copyright.

More info here.

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