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Cablegate: Special 301 Demarche Delivered; New Legislation

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS ANKARA 002506

SIPDIS


DEPT FOR EB/TPP/MTA/IPC - SWILSON/JURBAN AND EUR/SE
DEPT PASS USTR FOR LERRION/BPECK
DEPT PASS LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
DEPT PASS USPTO FOR ELAINE WU
USDOC FOR ITA/MAC/DDEFALCO


SENSITIVE


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETRD KIPR TU
SUBJECT: Special 301 Demarche Delivered; New Legislation
Could Weaken Patent Protection


Ref: State 97380


SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED. PLEASE HANDLE ACCORDINGLY.


1. (SBU) Embassy informed MFA and Foreign Trade
officials of reftel decision to elevate Turkey to the
Special 301 Priority Watch List on May 3. DCM made
reftel points on the decision in a conversation with MFA
Deputy Undersecretary for Economic Affairs Kilic, but
Kilic had no immediate response other than to ask for
the Special 301 status of the European Union. Econ
Counselor told Foreign Trade U/S Kayalar that
pharmaceuticals issues, particularly lack of data
exclusivity protection, weighed heavily in the U.S.
decision. Kayalar agreed that this is an important
issue, and said that the GOT is still considering this
policy. He noted that data exclusivity is on the agenda
of the EU Customs Union Joint Commission meeting
scheduled for later in the week. The Health Ministry
also intended to call a meeting of research-based and
generic companies to try to find common ground on this
issue. Kayalar said he would work to reduce the length
of the transition period for implementation of data
exclusivity (originally proposed for end-2007). With
respect to copyright and trademark enforcement, Kayalar
noted that strengthening judicial capacity was an
important element of upholding intellectual property
rights, but that this would have to be a long-term
effort.


2. (U) On May 4, Fahreddin Tatar, of Pfizer's Ankara
office, contacted Econoff to raise research-based
industry's concerns with draft legislation which could
seriously weaken patent protection. The bill, which has
been approved by Parliamentary committees and could go
to a vote this week, would hinder Turkish courts from
taking decisions on patent violations until after actual
patent issuance. Given the fact that the patent
application process takes several years in Turkey,
rightholders could face a long period of legal
vulnerability to infringement. Industry also claims the
legislation would also define registration of generic
drugs as not being in violation of patent rights.
Embassy faxed a copy of the draft legislation to
EB/TPP/MTA/IPC.
Edelman

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