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AAFA continues call for improved IPR enforcement
May '11
The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) released the following statement on publication of the 2011 Special 301Report by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). The Special 301 Report is an annual assessment of global intellectual property rights enforcement and protection.

“In 2010, footwear, apparel, and fashion accessories like handbags, were the first, third, and fourth most seized counterfeit goods by U.S. Customs and Border Protection,” said AAFA President and CEO Kevin M. Burke. “I applaud the best efforts of the broad coalition of U.S. government agencies, law enforcement, and international partners who continue to police the black market and help U.S. brands and companies protect their intellectual property. I also applaud efforts by USTR to work with trading partners to develop action plans that bring about real and meaningful results.”

“The 2011 Special 301 Report highlights the significant challenges that remain ahead of us,” Burke said. “The Internet, which is the fastest growing source of counterfeit goods, has added a new dimension to the fight against fakes. As consumers continue to embrace e-commerce, the United States and others must remain vigilant against new and emerging threats, including rogue Web sites, to U.S. brand identities and reputations as the U.S. apparel and footwear industry seeks to compete in the global marketplace.”

“U.S. brands are the best in the world, and these threats endanger U.S. jobs, public safety, and economic growth,” said Burke. “AAFA will continue working with administration and congressional officials, and our international trade partners, as we combat the scourge of counterfeiting. We will also work to educate U.S. consumers and retailers that intellectual property theft is not a victimless crime.”

American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA)

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