Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Ukraine Parliament fails to approve intellectual property rights

By Aussiegirl

Further evidence that the drift in formulating and implementing an economic policy designed to spur investment in Ukraine and gain entry into the WTO is creating a bad climate for recovery and economic growth. Ukraine is going to have to step it up to get things moving here. Tug o' war between the Prime Minister Tymoshenko and President Viktor Yushchenko over privatizations just isn't going to cut it.

Here's an analysis from Action Ukraine Report, a 5 times weekly newsletter:

E. Morgan Williams, Publisher & Editor
The Action Ukraine Report (AUR)

WASHINGTON - Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada (parliament) on Tuesday, May 31, 2005, once again voted down, by a narrow margin, a package of amendments to Ukraine's intellectual property rights laws that would have brought Ukraine into compliance with widely accepted international standards.

The amendments, if adopted, would have allowed the government of Ukraine to move forward to finalize the completion of several major inter- national business and economic agreements including several with the United States and those needed for possible accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in late 2005.

Ukraine again failed to legally protect intellectual property rights, which many experts believe will jeopardize Ukraine's efforts to join WTO, its efforts to get rid of economic sanctions imposed by the United States, undermine its efforts to substantially increase its trade and investment levels and its program to improve the image of its overall business environment.

Several top U.S. government officials involved in economic and trade agreements indicated last week in Washington they were very disappointed in the parliament's failure to pass the needed amendments. They felt this action was a huge blow to Ukraine and do not see much chance now for Ukraine to meet the requirements needed for WTO membership by late 2005.

Reports from Kyiv indicate the Yushchenko/Tymoshenko government did not do an adequate job of informing parliament members about the international and domestic importance to Ukraine of passing the intellectual property rights amendments. Also a considerable number of Our Ukraine members in the parliament did not vote for the intellectual property rights amendments and several key Our Ukraine bloc members were not even in Kyiv the day the vote was taken. Passage of the amendments would have provided substantial benefits to Ukraine.

The failure of the Our Ukraine bloc in the Parliament to strongly support Ukraine's rapid movement towards major international economic and trade agreements has been alarming to many private business and government leaders around the world.


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