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NEWS UPDATES 28 January 2010

Thailand to push for US priority watch list removal

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Thailand's Deputy Commerce Minister Alongkorn Phonlabutr will officially visit the US to discuss with US officials about upgrading Thailand from the current Priority Watch List (PWL) following the country’s serious efforts in continuing crackdown on intellectual property rights violations, Thai News Agency reported.

Alongkorn said he would lead Thai delegates to officially visit the US from January 31- February 5.  He is scheduled to meet officials of the Office of the US Trade Representatives (USTR) to strengthen ties in trade and investment.

The Thai deputy commerce minister said he would raise the issue about removing Thailand from the Priority Watch List (PWL) and related issues on several forms of intellectual property infringement.

The trade value between Thailand and the US was valued at 856 billion baht (1$=33 baht). The US is Thailand’s third largest trade partner.

From January to October 2009, Thailand prosecuted 6,731 intellectual property violation cases and seized more than five million exhibits, a 75 per cent increase from the same period in the previous year.

The deputy commerce minister will also go to Los Angeles to seek cooperation in the movie and animation industries between Thailand and the US.

The renewal of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) and progress on the Thailand-US Free Trade Agreement (FTA) will be on the agenda during the meeting with US officials, Mr Alongkorn added.


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