Official Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement responses begin to mount

As public outrage over ACTA mounts, there have been a series of official responses to questions posed by legislators or raised through access to information requests. In addition to yesterday's statement from International Trade Minister Peter Van Loan's office confirming Canada's support of release of the ACTA text, recent documents or statements include:

”¢ David Lammy, United Kingdom Minister for Intellectual Property, has confirmed his support for ACTA transparency: “The UK has long been in favour of greater transparency in the ACTA negotiations, so I am very pleased that EU has now agreed that the draft ACTA text should be placed in the public domain as soon as possible. This would allow much more open and informed engagement with citizens, society, and parliaments.”

Ӣ Several NZ documents have been released under Access to Information. They include documents outlining which organizations have been consulted and disclose that the New Zealand government was initially interested in using ACTA to cover traditional knowledge such as Maori culture.

Ӣ A European Commission response to MEP Alexander Alvaro's questions on ACTA that focuses on cross-border copyright enforcement.

Ӣ A lengthy letter from the Dutch Ministers of Economic Affairs and of Justice to the Dutch Parliament on ACTA, addressing transparency and the legal competence of the EU and its Member States to enter into the agreement.

Michael Geist is a law professor and the Canada Research Chair in Internet and e-commerce law at the University of Ottawa.