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Intellectual Property

Chile remains on the Priority Watch List in 2018 for the 12th consecutive year.

Ongoing Challenges and Concerns

The United States continues to have serious concerns regarding a number of longstanding implementation issues with the IP provisions of the United States-Chile Free Trade Agreement (FTA). Chile did not deliver any tangible progress on outstanding IP commitments in recent years, and Chile failed to adequately prioritize these important shortcomings. The United States urges Chile to pass legislation establishing criminal and civil penalties for theft of satellite signals and trafficking in decoder devices. Chile must also establish protections against the unlawful circumvention of technological protection measures (TPMs) used to control access to and copying of protected works. Effective administrative and judicial procedures, as well as deterrent remedies, must be in place and available to right holders and satellite and cable service providers.

The United States continues to urge Chile to ratify and implement the 1991 Act of the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants Convention (UPOV 91) and improve protection for plant varieties. The United States also urges Chile to make effective its system for addressing patent issues expeditiously in connection with applications to market pharmaceutical products and to provide adequate protection against unfair commercial use, as well as unauthorized disclosure, of undisclosed test or other data generated to obtain marketing approval for pharmaceutical products. Finally, the United States urges Chile to correct its internet service provider (ISP) liability framework to permit effective and expeditious action against online piracy.

Developments, Including Progress and Actions Taken

Over the past year, the National Institute of Industrial Property (INAPI) made operational improvements to patent and trademark registration processes, such as implementing an electronic signature program, strengthening security measures to safeguard information, taking steps toward becoming a paperless organization, and inaugurating a technology and innovation support center. INAPI also performed an important role for the region as an International Search Authority under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), receiving a 20% increase in 2017 of PCT applications and expanding its competency to include search and examination reports in both Spanish and English to better serve PCT users from the Caribbean. Chile’s specialized IP crime unit, the Investigative Brigade of IP Crimes (BRIDEPI), celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2017. One of BRIDEPI’s recent achievements was a targeted enforcement campaign against counterfeit toys, during which 300,000 counterfeit toys were seized, some of which contained lead paint and other toxic materials unsafe for children.

With respect to the outstanding FTA implementation concerns noted, Chile took insufficient steps toward potential progress. A bill that would criminalize satellite and cable signal theft and related decoder devices, as well as amendments to the industrial property law, are pending in Congress. The United States will continue to work closely with Chile to address IP issues, but it has been fourteen years since the Chile FTA entered into force, and the United States expects to see tangible progress in these areas in 2018.

Several general principles are important for effective management of intellectual property rights in most countries. First, it is important to have an overall strategy to protect your IP. Second, IP may be protected differently overseas than in the United States. Third, rights must be registered and enforced in other countries, under local laws. For example, your U.S. trademark and patent registrations will not protect you in an overseas market. There is no such thing as an "international copyright" that will automatically protect an author's writings throughout the entire world. Protection against unauthorized use in a particular country depends, basically, on the national laws of that country. However, most countries do offer copyright protection to foreign works in accordance with international agreements. For additional IP information, please check Protecting Intellectual Property and also Corruption.

IP Attaché Contact Chile

  • Name: Ann Chaitovitz

Address: Av. La Encalada Cuadra 17 s/n, Monterrico, Surco, Lima 33-Peru

Telephone: +51-1-6182173

E-mail: ann.chaitovitz@trade.gov

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