US launches IP trade probe of Ukraine

May 30, 2013

The United States announced Thursday an investigation of alleged officially sanctioned intellectual property theft in Ukraine, a move which could result in trade retaliation by Washington.

Acting US Trade Representative Miriam Sapiro said the "Section 301" investigation comes after Ukraine was identified in a report earlier this month as a major center of IP violations.

The May 1 report labeled Ukraine a "priority foreign country" due to rampant software and Internet-based piracy, as well as fraudulent collection and payment of copyright fees owed foreign artists.

Such a designation means Ukraine can be targeted for trade retaliation under section 301 of the US Trade Act of 1974.

"The United States has identified serious concerns with Ukraine's treatment of ," said Sapiro in a statement.

"We will consult with the Government of Ukraine on the practices that led us to initiate this investigation."

Public hearings will be held on July 18 and the probe is expected to be concluded with an official determination on November 30.

The May 1 report cited several years of rising US concern over widespread IP theft in Ukraine, "including the growing entrenchment of IPR infringement that is facilitated by government actors."

The USTR alleged that "rogue" groups with ties to Ukrainian had taken over the collection of , without forwarding them to rights-holders.

The government itself uses a large amount of , the USTR said.

In addition, the country allows the operations of major websites for the download of pirated entertainment and software like ExtraTorrent.com, which illustrates "how Ukraine has become perceived as a safe haven for online piracy enterprises serving other markets," it said.

Explore further: US helps Ukraine crack bank hacking scheme

Related Stories

US helps Ukraine crack bank hacking scheme

August 22, 2011

US agents have helped Ukrainian authorities uncover a group of computer hackers who used forged banking details to steal some $20 million from private US accounts, officials said Monday.

US singles out Ukraine as key piracy center

May 1, 2013

The United States singled out Ukraine on Wednesday as a major center of intellectual property theft, saying that the government itself has been behind the growth in piracy in the country.

Recommended for you

Facebook ready to test giant drone for Internet service

July 30, 2015

Facebook says it will begin test flights later this year for a solar-powered drone with a wingspan as big as a Boeing 737, in the next stage of its campaign to deliver Internet connectivity to remote parts of the world.

Power grid forecasting tool reduces costly errors

July 30, 2015

Accurately forecasting future electricity needs is tricky, with sudden weather changes and other variables impacting projections minute by minute. Errors can have grave repercussions, from blackouts to high market costs. ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.