CMC urges government to act on IP issues
The Canadian Manufacturing Coalition (CMC) is lobbying the federal government to implement the recommendations endo...
The Canadian Manufacturing Coalition (CMC) is lobbying the federal government to implement the recommendations endorsed in a new study by the Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology.
The report, entitled Counterfeiting and Piracy are Theft, sets out 19 recommendations to address the impact of counterfeit and pirated goods on Canadian industries.
The recommendations include the creation of an annual reporting system to provide statistics on the efficacy of the Canadian intellectual property (IP) enforcement system; new legislation that defines trademark counterfeiting as a criminal offence under the Trademarks Act; and the establishment of an Intellectual Property Task Force to “work with intellectual property business leaders in order to guide and coordinate anti-counterfeiting and anti-piracy efforts in Canada.”
“Manufacturers, their employees, and their customers are adversely affected when counterfeit goods or products are made with pirated intellectual property,” said Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters’ chief economist Jayson Myers. “The committee recommended real measures that make sense and were supported by Conservatives, Liberals, and members of the Bloc and NDP.”
The standing committee held four meetings on the issue of counterfeiting and piracy of IP starting in April 2007. Francois Beauchesne, the vice president of sales and business development Granby, Que.-based Polyform Foam Plastics Inc. appeared as a witness to attest to the impact of IP counterfeiting.
“As we speak we are victims of intellectual property theft. Four American companies are currently copying our patents in force, but with limited means, we cannot invest millions of dollars required for rapid and proactive protection,” said Beauchesne at a committee meeting on April 30.
“Every day, many contracts are lost, and instead of progressing and creating jobs, we are presently experiencing negative growth and have had to lay off employees,” he continued. “We are working on an action plan to counter the American companies, but if the Asian companies copy us, then who are we going to prosecute and, above all, how?”
The CMC is a consortium of 28 national and international industry associations, including the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA).