Commerce Minister Sontirat Sontijirawong is satisfied with Washington’s decision to maintain Thailand in the present status on intellectural infringements. (Post Today file photo)

The Commerce Ministry has expressed satisfaction over the US’s decision to keep Thailand in a “Watch List” (WL) status on intellectual property infringements after the country just moved up from the bottom tier late last year.

“The ranking result this year is satisfactory,” said Commerce Minister Sontirat Sontijirawong. “I want to thank all agencies, including central and regional authorities, who have worked hard together on this issue.”

Thailand is among 24 countries which were declared as occupying watch list status, based on the 2018 Special 301 Report, released by the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) on Friday night.

The report names the US’s trading partners which in its view do not adequately protect and enforce IP rights. Other countries are Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Greece, Guatemala, Jamaica, Lebanon, Mexico, Pakistan, Peru, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan, the United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam. In December last year, Thailand was moved to the watch list from the Priority Watch List (PWL), the bottom tier, where the country had been stuck for 10 years since 2007.

Citing the report, Mr Sontirat said the US appreciates Thailand’s policy and progress in protecting IP rights and suppressing IP violations, particularly the fact that the country set up the National Committee on Intellectual Property, headed by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, and a relevant subcommittee, led by deputy premier Prawit Wongsuwon, to deal with the IP violations.

News Reporter

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