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Tuesday, 9 March 2004 - Strasbourg OJ edition

Intellectual property

  De Clercq (ELDR ). (NL) Mr President, I congratulate the rapporteur on her sustained efforts to achieve compromise amendments and, through the necessary contacts, to accomplish a compromise text. We shall thus escape a second or third reading.

Reference has been made many times already to the adverse consequences of counterfeiting in all kinds of fields, and to the risks to public health and innovation. The situation has worsened over the past three years, and all kinds of product are now found, even current consumer goods. The extent of the phenomenon is becoming increasingly alarming, and organised crime is increasingly involved. An initiative at European level is urgently needed, therefore, particularly as these phenomena are largely based in the new Member States.

The positive points in the report include the fact that the Directive is to apply to all infringements of intellectual property rights. Member States must also ensure that any serious infringements of intellectual property rights are classified as criminal offences punishable by criminal penalties. It is well-known that creativity and innovation are the key trump cards in our European economy, and so they must enjoy sufficient protection. I should like to appeal for support for the rapporteur in her fight, therefore.

Last updated: 10 August 2004Legal notice