Quiapo, the last of the six “notorious markets” in the Philippines named by the Washington-based Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR), is no longer on the agency’s list this year.
As a result, the Philippines has also been stricken off the USTR’s 2012 Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets, which identifies “more than 30 Internet and physical markets that exemplify marketplaces that deal in infringing goods and services, facilitating and sustaining global piracy and counterfeiting.”
The country had been in the list for the past six years.
“Positive action has also occurred over the past year at physical markets. One example is the Quiapo shopping district in the Philippines. The Philippine government has taken significant enforcement actions that have reduced the number of counterfeit and pirated goods available for sale and, as a result, the market has been removed from the 2012 List,” US Trade Representative Ron Kirk said in a report posted on the agency’s web site.
Earlier, the USTR dropped from its list five other shopping areas in the Philippines—Greenhills, Divisoria, Makati Cinema Square, Binondo and Baclaran.
The USTR is responsible for developing and coordinating American international trade, commodities and direct investment policies.
Meanwhile, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) welcomed the latest report, saying the “Holistic Approach” that started in 2010 has been found very effective and would continue to be used as a mainstay enforcement activity.
The holistic approach involves the concerted efforts of government agencies with the active participation of rights holders.
In a statement, IPOPHL director-general Ricardo Blancaflor acknowledged the contributions of local officials in getting the country out of the notorious markets list.
He especially cited the efforts of the City of Manila, through Mayor Alfredo Lim.