Annual U.S. Trade Report Attacks China Over 'Epidemic' Of Fake Goods

China is still not doing enough to rein in an "epidemic" of counterfeit goods, the U.S. government said March 1 in an annual trade report to Congress.

It praised China for taking major steps to liberalize its economy since joining the WTO in late 2001. "At this point, however, China's implementation of its WTO obligations is still incomplete," the report said, singling out abuses of intellectual property rights (IPR).

"Counterfeiting and piracy in China remain at epidemic levels and cause serious economic harm to U.S. businesses in virtually every sector of the economy," it said. Despite its commitments as a WTO member, China has yet to confer full market access to U.S. companies nor to give those firms already present in the country unfettered freedom of operation.

The U. S. wants to cooperate with China on trade questions, it said. But it warned that the administration "will not hesitate to employ the full range of dispute settlement and other tools available" to force China to heel on trade disputes.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2006

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