MANILA — For four consecutive years, the Philippines has maintained its clean record in the Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) for 2015.
This year’s USTR’s report does not identify any physical markets in the Philippines among the notorious markets for piracy and counterfeiting globally.
The Philippines has sustained its status since 2012 — the first time for the Philippines to be removed from the USTR’s notorious markets list.
Only until 2011, Quiapo Shopping District, Greenhills, Binondo, Makati Cinema Square and 168 Malls were included in the list.
Among the notorious markets listed in the USTR’s report are: China’s Jin Long Pan Foreign Trade Garment Market in Guangzhou, Luohu Commercial Center in Shenzhen, Chenghai District in Shantou, Qi Pu Market in Shanghai, and Silk Market in Beijing; Nigeria’s Computer Village Market, Ikeja in Lagos State and Oke-Arin & Apongbon Markets in Lagos Island; Mexico’s Tepito in Mexico City and San Juan de Dios in Guadalajara; Paraguay’s Ciudad del Este; Sao Paulo, Brazil’s Galeria Pagé and 25 de Março; Jakarta, Indonesia’s Harco Glodok; Buenos Aires, Argenita’s La Salada; New Delhi, India’s Tank Road and Sadar Bazar; and Bangkok, Thailand’s MBK Mall.
In a previous interview, Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) Deputy Director General Allan Gepty mentioned that the government has seized counterfeited and pirated goods worth PhP56.25 billion since 2005.
IPOPHL is co-leading with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) for the National Committee on Intellectual Property Rights (NCIPR) — a government body composed of different agencies that can enforce operation to seize counterfeit and pirated goods that entered the local market.
Aside from IPOPHL and DTI, NCIPR is composed of BOC, National Bureau of Investigation, Optical Media Board (OMB), Philippine National Police, Department of Justice, Food and Drug Administration, National Book Development Board, Office of the Special Envoy for Transnational Crime, National Telecommunication Commission, and Department of the Interior and Local Government.
Aside from the notorious markets list, the Philippines also maintained a good record in USTR’s Special 301 Report since 2014.
The Philippines was first placed on the watch list in 1989 and considered to be having the potential of becoming a center of pirate optical media production in Asia in 2001.
It was removed from the watch list based on sustained actions that the Philippine government has undertaken to improve intellectual property rights protection.