EU suspends international anti-counterfeiting pact ratification

European Commission referred ACTA decision to EU’s highest court amid vitriol

It may take a little longer for Europe to get on the same page as many of its industrialized peers when it comes to intellectual property rights. The European Commission today suspended its efforts to ratify the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), which seeks to establish international standards for intellectual property rights enforcement.

Specifically, the treaty looks to establish an international legal framework for targeting counterfeit goods, generic drugs and Internet copyright infringement. ACTA also would establish a new governing body independent from the World Trade Organization, World Intellectual Property Organization or the United Nations. In October 2011, a number of nations including the U.S., Canada and Japan signed the pact. The European Commission also passed ACTA, but is awaiting ratification by all 27 EU member states.

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