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09.17.11

Cablegate: EU Negotiations About EU Patent/Community Patent

Posted in Cablegate, Europe, Intellectual Monopoly, Patents at 5:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: 3 cables from Brussels and Geneva, all demonstrating growing acceptance of artificial trans-Atlantic monopolies with similar trends within Europe itself

According to EU authorities, there is no reason to worry about expanding the scope of patents, opening the door to increased litigation and damages.

In the following 3 cables we see the subject brought up several times. In the second cable, “Lorrain added that patent harmonization would be interesting, along with a discussion on copyrights and other current IPR issues.”

The third cable says: “A key area that would further innovation in the seed industry would be patent harmonization of plant protection, as the existing rules under the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs) allow for protection of plant varieties either by patents or by an effective sui generis system or by any combination thereof. As a result, there are varying degrees of patent protection for plants from one territory to another. ”

We wrote about TRIPS in [1, 2, 3, 4]. The three cables from 2008 and 2009 are as follows:

Read the rest of this entry »

Cablegate: Sarkozy Promotes Monopolies in China, French Government Backs ‘Community Patent’ (aka EU Patent, Harmonisation)

Posted in Cablegate, Europe, Intellectual Monopoly, Patents at 4:44 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: The position of the Nicolas Sarkozy regime on intellectual monopolies including patents

POOR CHINA. The West is too obsessed with (afraid of) this highly productive nation that exports almost everything people buy in the shops if it’s economic to transport by ship. Japan et al. try to limit China's trade using intellectual monopolies, which can impede domestic production under independent brands (Apple, for instance, is notorious for shutting down competing factories in China under the pretext of “IPR”). In any event, according to the following Cablegate cable (under ¶4), the Nicolas Sarkozy regime “recently ratified the London protocol and would support adoption of a Community patent during its presidency, he said. “Common reflection” on patent harmonization issues was a potential area for TEC discussion. France also was supportive of the International Anti-counterfeiting and Piracy Agreement (?) (ACTA).”

The information came from Novelli, who “had accompanied President Sarkozy to China in late 2007 and the message on IPR had been “very firm.” Pushing together for a stronger Chinese approach on IPR was important.” Important to who? Surely not the Chinese population.

The position from Paris and EU authorities matters a lot and the cable below is not so out of date. It’s also about ACTA.


VZCZCXYZ7332
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHFR #0386/01 0641756
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 041756Z MAR 08
FM AMEMBASSY PARIS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2152
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS PARIS 000386 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPARTMENT PASS USTR 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ECON [Economic Conditions], ETRD [Foreign Trade], 
ENRG [Energy and Power], PREL [External Political Relations],
EAGR [Agriculture and Forestry], EUR, FR [France; Corsica] 
SUBJECT: FRENCH RECEPTIVE TO A/S SULLIVAN'S PITCH ON TEC 
 
REF: 2/11 PARIS POINT ON FRENCH GMO LAW 
 
¶1. (U) Embassy Action Request Para 14. 
 
¶2. (SBU) Summary:  In February 13-14 meetings French Trade 
Minister Novelli, MFA Economic Director Masset and PM 
Diplomatic Advisor Lapouge told A/S Dan Sullivan they would 
be supportive of the Trans-Atlantic Economic Council (TEC) 
as an important part of France's EU presidency.  On other 
issues Novelli said France would pay attention to 
"reciprocity" in EU foreign economic relations during its 
presidency.  France's position on agricultural bio- 
technology was evolving, with the amended draft law on GMOs 
recently approved by the French Senate a more "balanced" 
approach than that of the initial draft.  Lapouge said 
energy supply issues would figure among France's EU 
presidency priorities and briefed on PM Fillon's early 
February trip to Kazakhstan.  End summary. 
 
Novelli on TEC, 100% Screening, IPR 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶3. (SBU) In a February 13 meeting A/S Sullivan, accompanied 
by Ambassador Stapleton and SE Boyden Gray, told French 
Trade Junior Minister Herve Novelli the U.S. hoped France 
would put the TEC high on its agenda for the French EU 
presidency.  He underscored that the TEC not only could 
help deepen transatlantic economic relationship by reducing 
and harmonizing regulatory barriers, but also it has a much 
broader strategic rationale:  enabling the U.S. and EU to 
more closely coordinate economic policies vis-`-vis rising 
economic powers.  France's endorsement would be key to a 
successful TEC, and one that helped ensure the 
institution's longevity.  Novelli said the GOF saw the TEC 
as "very important" and the French presidency could "play a 
key role" in advancing it.  But the May TEC and June U.S.- 
EU Summit would precede the French presidency and it would 
be important to focus on these first. 
 
¶4. (SBU) Novelli described cargo security and IPR as GOF 
priorities (both in and out of the TEC).  U.S. requirements 
for 100% screening of containers were a top French concern 
given the "costs it would impose" on trans-Atlantic trade. 
Novelli saw convergence in U.S. - French interests on IPR. 
France recently ratified the London protocol and would 
support adoption of a Community patent during its 
presidency, he said. "Common reflection" on patent 
harmonization issues was a potential area for TEC 
discussion.  France also was supportive of the 
International Anti-counterfeiting and Piracy Agreement (?) 
(ACTA).  Novelli had accompanied President Sarkozy to China 
in late 2007 and the message on IPR had been "very firm." 
Pushing together for a stronger Chinese approach on IPR was 
important. 
 
Environmental Issues 
- - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶5. (SBU) In the wake of its late 2007 "Grenelle" 
environmental pact France would be "exemplary" on cutting 
carbon emissions.  The GOF was considering a variety of 
eco-taxes (and had already implemented some) as part of 
this effort.  It would use its EU presidency to encourage 
an "awakening" on the use of such measures among its EU 
partners.  Cuts in CO2 emissions were inevitable, Novelli 
said, the key would be to do so without impacting French 
productivity. (Note: Novelli said nothing about France's 
proposal for a carbon tax on imports from countries that do 
not impose binding limits on CO2 emissions. End note) 
A/S Sullivan underscored U.S. - EU convergence on climate 
change, especially through the Major Economies process. 
 
¶6. (SBU) Sullivan raised the issue of GMOs, and Novelli 
said the GOF's position was evolving.  The French Senate 
had passed a "more balanced" amended version of the GMO law 
than the one presented to parliament (ref).  The position 
of Minister of Ecology and Sustainable Development Borloo 
was shifting, Novelli claimed, "in spite the views of 
environmental groups."  France's current ban on MON810 
"could be lifted," he said, though he did not specify the 
timing or circumstances of a possible rescission. 
 
Reciprocity 
- - - - - - 
 
¶7. (SBU) Novelli previewed other priority issues within his 
remit for the French presidency.  The GOF would pursue a 
European Small Business Act, to include regulatory 
simplification and access to public procurement.  The GOF 
had presented its ideas in Brussels to "enrich the debate" 
and the Commission was preparing an initial draft.  The GOF 
would encourage movement towards freer trade and investment 
regimes, but on the basis of reciprocity.  The GOF wanted 
Europe to be "as open as our partners," but it would demand 
a level playing field.  Discussion on EU trade defense 
measures was a possible "element" in France's strategy for 
pursuing reciprocity. 
 
¶8. (SBU) France continued to hope for a Doha deal, Novelli 
said, but it "must be balanced."  The GOF felt the 
Commission had done the "maximum," in fact surpassing 
negotiating mandates on agriculture and industrial access. 
France would not "sacrifice its interests" for the sake of 
a deal.  Sullivan underscored very strong U.S. commitment 
to getting a "good, ambitious" agreement.  He also noted 
the importance of maintaining a public commitment to open 
trade and investment, saying that foreign direct investment 
was a net benefit regardless of reciprocal limitations that 
partners might impose. 
 
TEC Strategic Dialogue Timely 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶9. (SBU) In a separate meeting MFA Economic Director 
Christian Masset echoed Novelli's support for the TEC.  He 
warmed to A/S Sullivan's description of the strategic 
nature of the TEC as demonstrated by the dialogue that had 
occurred over lunch at the November meeting.  Such dialogue 
could be particularly useful given that France would host 
EU summits with a number of key developing economies during 
its presidency, including China and India. 
 
¶10. (SBU) Masset expanded on the French EU presidency 
priorities of climate change and energy.  The GOF would 
look to move forward with Phase II of the Emissions Trading 
System, the framework directive on renewables, and a 
directive for carbon capture and storage.  To reach 2020 
reduction goals, half of the gains would come through the 
functioning of the ETS, the other half from sectors not 
covered by the trading system.  It would take strong action 
in both areas to achieve EU goals. 
 
¶11. (SBU) On energy security, France would "put more 
emphasis" on dialogue with the Central Asia/Caspian region 
on diversification.  Masset was keen on A/S Sullivan's 
views on the region, and Sullivan highlighted elements of 
his latest trip to Turkey, Azerbaijan, and Turkmenistan. 
Masset and Sullivan also touched on eventual membership of 
India and China in the IEA (septel). 
 
PM Fillon in Kazakhstan 
- -  - - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶12. (SBU) PM Fillon's diplomatic advisor Jacques Lapouge 
briefed Sullivan on the Prime Minister's early February 
visit to Kazakhstan (the first such visit in 15 years). 
Calling the trip "pretty encouraging," Lapouge said Fillon 
brought a message of support for development of westward 
hydrocarbon supply routes.  Supply diversification would, 
in fact, be a theme of the French EU presidency.  Lapouge 
said Nazarbayev talked to Fillon about shipping product 
across the Caspian, as well as a possible pipeline skirting 
the southern shore of the Caspian.  He expressed continued 
interest in a pipeline to Iran. 
 
¶13. (SBU) On other issues, Lapouge responded positively to 
A/S Sullivan's briefing on TEC (though an advisor had heard 
disappointment at EU technical levels over a perceived lack 
of progress on EU issues at the first TEC).  On G8, the 
former Sous-Sherpa questioned whether there was sufficient 
follow-through in meeting commitments, notably on ODA.  The 
body's "credibility is at stake," Lapouge thought.  On IPR, 
the Heilegendamm Process must aim high and not be pulled 
down to the lowest common denominator.  Lapouge indicated 
the French were interested in keeping alive their proposal 
for a FATF-like body for IPR in G8 discussions. 
 
Embassy Action Request 
- - - - - - - - - - - 
 
¶14. (SBU) French views on energy supply diversification 
opportunities in the Caspian Basin are evolving.  With the 
GOF ready to engage more actively on energy diplomacy in 
the region during its EU presidency, this is an auspicious 
time to contribute to French thinking.  Post encourages the 
visit of an appropriate Department, or inter-agency, 
delegation to Paris in the coming months for in-depth 
discussions with French counterparts on these issues. 
 
¶15. (U) A/S Sullivan has cleared this cable. 
 
ROSENBLATT

In the next post we shall look at cables from Brussels.

Cablegate: In 2010, Patent Harmonisation “Not Welcomed by Developing Countries”

Posted in Africa, America, Asia, Cablegate, Law, Patents at 4:24 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: How US diplomats view negotiations whose goal is to legitimise monopolies in countries that have no interest in these

According to the following year-old cable, specifically in ¶5, “Member States negotiated informally a compromise work program that ensured balanced and focused work for the SCP [Standing Committee on the Law of Patents]. The proposed work program included: 1. further study on technology transfer concerning the relationship of patent technology transfer and innovation; 2. work on limitations and exceptions that included the external expert study and Brazil’s work program proposal; 3. patent administration issues that included work on patent quality management and further work on dissemination of patent information that looked at digitization issues and access to complete patent information; 4. further work on client-attorney privilege to solicit Member State input on national experiences; 5. future conference on public health and food security issues; and 6. reaffirming that the non-exhaustive list of issues for possible discussion by the SCP remain open for further elaboration at the next meeting, but agreeing that Member States would refrain from adding on to the list at this session, so as to ensure that work on the existing studies could be more focused. These items were truly a compromise text, particularly for Group B, as our primary objective to discuss patent harmonization issues was not part of this list and many of the items had more of a developing country interest/slant. On day one of our conversation concerning future work, we reached agreement among Group B countries, GRULAC, Eastern European countries, Singapore, Korea, the regional coordinator of Africa, Angola.”

They are trying to convince developing countries to give up and accept a system which harms them greatly. With our emphasis on the relevant parts, ¶7 carries on by noting that “While Group B and the U.S. were disappointed that the agreement reached the day before did not satisfy all of the Africa Group and the Asia Group, we were willing to negotiate further from our compromise text. However, it became clear that the Africa Group and some Asian Group countries were not willing to move from their position. Group B in particular was willing to add on to the non exhaustive list with the inclusion of “work sharing” and the “strategic use of IP in business” as proposed by the Group of Eastern European Countries. Despite developing countries’ insistence that the non exhaustive list remain open, Indonesia and India opposed the Group B suggestion of “work sharing”, arguing that it was duplicative of work at the PCT working group and that it was patent harmonization-related and therefore not welcomed by developing countries. Further, even though Group B reminded these countries that their proposed suggestions on the list were duplicative of work occurring in the Committee on Development and IP (CDIP), Egypt’s response was that development agenda work in CDIP was a cross-cutting issue throughout the Organization, and therefore duplication was needed.”

Here is the cable in full:


VZCZCXYZ0005
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHGV #0136/01 0491710
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 181701Z FEB 10
FM USMISSION GENEVA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0238
INFO RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHINGTON DC
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA
RUEHGV/USMISSION USTR GENEVA

UNCLAS GENEVA 000136 
 
SIPDIS 
STATE FOR EEB/IPC, IO/HS, OES 
COMMERCE FOR USPTO 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ECON [Economic Conditions], 
KIPR [Intellectual Property Rights], 
WIPO [World Intellectual Property Organization] 
SUBJECT: Fourteenth Session of the WIPO Standing Committee on the Law 
of Patents 
 
¶1. The World Intellectual Property Organization's Standing 
Committee on the Law of Patents (WIPO SCP) continued to discuss 
preliminary studies requested by the SCP in June 2008 and March 
2009, and commenced a discussion on Brazil's proposal concerning 
exceptions and limitations to patent rights.  However, an impasse 
resulted at the SCP on the future work of the committee.  As a 
result, the agenda from this session will be used for the next 
meeting in October 2010.  During two days worth of negotiations on 
the future work topic, it became clear that Member States fail to 
see eye to eye on the international patent system itself, as some 
view the system to be a threat to development and oppose any global 
efforts - whether normative or cooperative technical assistance 
work -- in improving the patent system.  END SUMMARY. 
 
¶2. The WIPO SCP met from January 25-29, 2010.  Delegations from 103 
countries, 10 international organizations and 28 non-governmental 
organizations participated in the Committee which was chaired by 
Mr. Maximiliano Santa Cruz from Chile.  The United States 
delegation was represented by USPTO External Affairs Administrator 
Arti Rai, Charles Eloshway of USPTO, Janet Speck, Deputy Director, 
State Department and Deborah Lashley-Johnson, IP Attach???? at the 
U.S. Mission to the UN. 
 
¶3. Discussions were based on preliminary studies written by the 
International Bureau at WIPO concerning the relationship of 
standards and patents, client-attorney privilege, dissemination of 
patent information, transfer of technology, and opposition systems. 
Many delegations stated that these documents constituted a good 
basis for discussions, and requested further clarifications on 
various issues contained in the documents.  However, certain 
statements made by developing countries and NGO were worrisome, 
such as: equating work on the client-attorney disclosure problem to 
patent law harmonization work; viewing the topic of dissemination 
of patent information to include the disclosure of proprietary 
information and trade secrets; and stating that a study should 
include how the patent system hinders technology transfer. 
 
¶4. The topic of limitations and exceptions was also discussed, 
although the external experts' study was not available for this 
meeting.  A proposal in respect of exceptions and limitations to 
patent rights was submitted by the Delegation of Brazil, which 
received support by many developing countries.  The proposal has 
three phases:  discussion on national experiences on patent right 
exceptions and limitations; focus work on exceptions and 
limitations that help to address developmental concerns; and the 
development of an exceptions and limitations manual.  Other 
delegations, such as the U.S., Switzerland and other industrialized 
countries expressed concern that they had not received the document 
in advance of the meeting, and therefore had insufficient time to 
consider the proposal, and expressed a wish to consider the 
proposal at the following session in October 2010 when the external 
expert study would also be presented.  Nonetheless, the U.S. noted 
that it was interested in studying the issue more and saw strong 
intellectual property rights and enforcement to be consistent with 
proper, basic limitations and exceptions. 
 
¶5.  Gridlock, however, occurred once the committee moved onto the 
topic of future work.  Several regional coordinators and interested 
Member States negotiated informally a compromise work program that 
ensured balanced and focused work for the SCP.  The proposed work 
program included:  1. further study on technology transfer 
concerning the relationship of patent technology transfer and 
innovation; 2. work on limitations and exceptions that included the 
external expert study and Brazil's work program proposal; 3. patent 
administration issues that included work on patent quality 
management and further work on dissemination of patent information 
that looked at digitization issues and access to complete patent 
information; 4. further work on client-attorney privilege to 
solicit Member State input on national experiences; 5. future 
conference on public health and food security issues; and 6. 
reaffirming that the non-exhaustive list of issues for possible 
discussion by the SCP remain open for further elaboration at the 
next meeting, but agreeing that Member States would refrain from 
adding on to the list at this session, so as to ensure that work on 
the existing studies could be more focused.  These items were truly 
a compromise text, particularly for Group B, as our primary 
objective to discuss patent harmonization issues was not part of 
this list and many of the items had more of a developing country 
interest/slant.  On day one of our conversation concerning future 
work, we reached agreement among Group B countries, GRULAC, Eastern 
European countries, Singapore, Korea, the regional coordinator of 
Africa, Angola. 
 
¶6.  However, on day two, Angola, members of the Africa Group, such 
as Egypt and South Africa, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, 
 
 
Yemen, Iran and Indonesia, opposed the compromise text.  Their 
amendments suggested future studies on the negative impacts patents 
have on technology transfer and standards, and a new study on 
patents and public health.  There was also a proposal on the 
establishment of a technology transfer commission to focus on the 
problems of technology transfer.  Their proposal further lacked 
balance in their deletion of the only two issues offered by Group B 
in the initial compromise proposal concerning patent quality 
management and further work on client-attorney privilege.  The 
counter-proposal also included another large conference on patents 
and public policy issues as a follow up to the one held in July 
2009.  Lastly, they pushed to expand the non-exhaustive list to 
include topics such as the impact of the patent system on 
developing countries and LDCs, and the relationship of patents and 
food security. 
 
¶7. While Group B and the U.S. were disappointed that the agreement 
reached the day before did not satisfy all of the Africa Group and 
the Asia Group, we were willing to negotiate further from our 
compromise text.  However, it became clear that the Africa Group 
and some Asian Group countries were not willing to move from their 
position.  Group B in particular was willing to add on to the non 
exhaustive list with the inclusion of "work sharing" and the 
"strategic use of IP in business" as proposed by the Group of 
Eastern European Countries.  Despite developing countries' 
insistence that the non exhaustive list remain open, Indonesia and 
India opposed the Group B suggestion of "work sharing", arguing 
that it was duplicative of work at the PCT working group and that 
it was patent harmonization-related and therefore not welcomed by 
developing countries.  Further, even though Group B reminded these 
countries that their proposed suggestions on the list were 
duplicative of work occurring in the Committee on Development and 
IP (CDIP), Egypt's response was that development agenda work in 
CDIP was a cross-cutting issue throughout the Organization, and 
therefore duplication was needed. 
 
¶8. COMMENT: Group B member states expressed deep concern about the 
events that transpired at this meeting.  Several countries refused 
to negotiate from their maximalist positions, which has been a 
concern in other committees at WIPO.  The inflexibility of 
developing country positions will make reaching a compromise on any 
SCP work program impossible, particularly when this committee has 
had a history of disbanding for three years due to similar 
political impasses.  Further, it is clear that the development 
agenda is the only work these delegations are interested in at the 
expense of issues related to patent law that are important to Group 
B and their constituents.   Targeted demarches to the few countries 
that are blocking progress and preventing the SCP to function are 
being considered.  In addition, Group B will increase its 
coordination to advance its agenda on the various issues before the 
SCP, such as in the areas of technology transfer, limitation and 
exceptions, client-attorney privilege, opposition systems, and 
dissemination of patent information. END COMMENT. 
GRIFFITHS

Next, we are going to look at some EU positions on the subject.

Cablegate: Italy’s Decade of Antagonising Patent Colonialism

Posted in Cablegate, Europe, Patents at 3:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: A 2002 cable shows resistance (even back then) to the idea of ‘globalising’ monopolies on ideas

According to the following Cablegate cable from almost a decade ago, the government of Italy “DOES NOT/NOT SUPPORT THE CREATION OF A SEPARATE GROUP TO PURSUE PATENT HARMONIZATION DISCUSSIONS.” (see ¶3)

As we explained here before, Italy is one of the reasons — the other being Spain — that the EU Patent is not being implemented to allow import of US patent monopolies, in due course (including, potentially, software patents).

Keep strong, Italy.


UNCLAS ROME 004495 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SENSITIVE 
 
STATE FOR EUR/SE AND EB/IPC 
STATE PASS USTR FOR BURCKY 
STATE PASS USPTO FOR HUTHER, PAUGH, SANTAMAURO, BOLAND 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: KIPR [Intellectual Property Rights], ECON [Economic Conditions], ETRD [Foreign Trade], EUN [European Union] 
SUBJECT: ITALIAN RESPONSE TO DEMARCHE ON SUBSTANTIVE PATENT 
LAW TREATY 
 
REF: A. ROME 3961 
 
     B. STATE 149859 
 
THIS MESSAGE IS SENSITIVE.  NOT FOR INTERNET DISTRIBUTION. 
 
¶1. (U) ECONOFF MET ON 12 SEPTEMBER WITH COUNSELOR GIULIO 
PRIGIONI, THE NEWLY-APPOINTED ITALIAN REPRESENTATIVE TO WIPO 
(REF.A) TO DISCUSS REF POINTS (REF. B). 
 
¶2. (SBU) THE GOI AGREES WITH THE USG POSITION THAT THE 
STANDING COMMITTEE ON THE LAW OF PATENTS SHOULD REMAIN 
FOCUSED AND PRODUCTIVE, PRIGIONI ASSURED.  HOWEVER, THE GOI 
IS NOT YET PREPARED TO GO PUBLIC THIS VIEW SINCE DISCUSSIONS 
ARE STILL IN THEIR EARLY PHASE AND A JURIDICAL BASIS FOR AN 
AGREEMENT HAS YET TO BE IDENTIFIED. 
 
¶3. (U) THE GOI, MOREOVER, DOES NOT/NOT SUPPORT THE CREATION 
OF A SEPARATE GROUP TO PURSUE PATENT HARMONIZATION 
DISCUSSIONS. PRIGIONI NOTED THAT, IN THE GOI VIEW, THE 
CREATION OF A SEPARATE GROUP WOULD CREATE THE IMPRESSION OF A 
DEAL BEING STRUCK BEHIND CLOSED DOORS, POTENTIALLY 
UNDERMINING THE LEGITIMACY OF AN AGREEMENT.  HE PROPOSED 
INSTEAD THAT BILATERAL EXCHANGES BE USED TO SUPPLEMENT 
STANDING COMMITTEE DISCUSSIONS. 
SEMBLER 
 
                       UNCLASSIFIED 
 
 
2002ROME04495 - Classification: UNCLASSIFIED

We are going to cover some more cables on this important subject of legislative relevance (keeping software patents out of Europe).

Cablegate: CERGE-EI “American-style” Education With UNIX Labs

Posted in Cablegate, Europe, UNIX at 3:33 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: UNIX in the Czech Republic amid Westernisation

According to the following Cablegate cable, “The CERGE-EI library [...] has been a depository library of the World Bank. Computer facilities include a UNIX lab with high-capacity works stations and several PC labs. The ratio of computers to students is among the highest in Europe.”

It is all in ¶10 of the following cable.


UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 PRAGUE 001415 
 
SIPDIS 
 
USAID FOR GEORGE LIKE, DCHA/PVC-ASHA 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ECON [Economic Conditions], EZ [Czech Republic] 
SUBJECT: CZECH REPUBLIC:  STRONG SUPPORT FOR (CERGE-EI) 
CENTER FOR ECONOMIC RESEARCH AND GRADUATE EDUCATION -- 
ECONOMIC INSTITUTE 
 
REF: STATE 159943 
 
¶1.  SUMMARY:  Post strongly supports ASHA financial 
assistance for CERGE-EI, the leading economics doctoral 
program in the region, fully-accredited in both the Czech 
Republic and the United States.  CERGE-EI has the best 
economics library in the country, containing a wealth of 
American texts and journals that teach and promote 
market-based economics.  END SUMMARY. 
 
--------------------------------------------- ----------- 
Demonstration Center for American Ideas and Practices in 
Education 
--------------------------------------------- ----------- 
¶2.  CERGE-EI was founded in 1991 "to meet the post-communist 
countries' critical need for economists, to educate a new 
economic leadership for the region in the region."  CERGE-EI 
provides an "american-style" education and is accredited by 
the New York State Board of Regents.  Its four-year doctoral 
program consists of two-years of course work followed by 
two-years of supervised dissertation research.  The working 
language of the institution is English, and CERGE-EI 
encourages its students to conduct part of their dissertation 
research at partner institutions in Western Europe and North 
America. 
 
¶3.  CERGE-EI's English Department is unique among major 
doctoral programs in economics, and provides students with 
the skills necessary to successfully participate in economic 
research and publication at the highest levels.  As 
increasing percentage of students in doctoral programs in the 
U.S. come from non-English speaking backgrounds, visitors to 
CERGE-EI frequently observe that the innovative program at 
CERGE-EI and the integral role English instruction plays in 
its doctoral program provide a model that should be adopted 
at their own institutions. 
 
¶4. The Executive and Supervisory Committee of CERGE-EI draw 
distinguished economists from top U.S. universities:  Joseph 
Stiglitz from Columbia University; Philippe Aghio of Harvard 
University; Orley Ashenfelter, Richard Quandt and Henry 
Farber of Princeton University; Jan Svenar and Jan Kemtna of 
the University of Michigan;  Gerard Roland, Michelle White 
and Roger Gordon from the University of California system. 
 
--------------------------------------------- ----- 
Importance and Quality of CERGE-EI in the Field of Education 
--------------------------------------------- ----- 
¶5.  One of CERGE-EI's primary goals is to educate future 
economic leaders of countries in transition throughout the 
world.  The student profile is as follows:  60 percent men; 
40 percent women; 25 percent from Russia, Ukraine and 
Belarus; 24 percent from the Czech Republic, 20 percent from 
the Balkans; 18 percent from Poland, Hungary and Slovakia; 11 
percent other former Soviet states; 2 percent from the rest 
of the world.  80 percent of CERGE-EI graduates are employed 
in the region.  The average grade point average of entering 
students is above 3.6 (out of 4.0). 
 
¶6.  A glance at CERGE-EI alumni profile speaks to the 
importance and quality of its program; 38 percent of CERGE-EI 
graduates find employment in the public sector (ministries, 
central banks and international organizations), 25 percent in 
university teaching, and 37 percent in the private sector. 
Graduates include economists at International Financial 
Institutions (IFIs) such as the International Monetary Fund, 
the World Bank, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and 
Development.  Czech National Bank Governor Zdenek Tuma is a 
former CERGE-EI faculty member.  Graduates in the private 
sector are employed by private banks Citibank Komercni Banka) 
and consulting firms (e.g. McKinsey & Company, the Boston 
Consulting Group).  Graduates teach in Universities in the 
region, in Western Europe and in the U.S. (e.g., Tilburg 
University in the Netherlands, University of Iowa).  When the 
World Bank commissioned a major study calling form reform of 
Czech capital markets, CERGE-EI professors joined the study 
team to provide local expertise and CERGE-EI students were 
employed to conduct data analysis. 
 
¶7.  Recognizing the critical impact of economic training on 
the success of reform, CERGE-EI offered to provide doctoral 
study in Prague for two Iraqi students.  As such, CERGE-EI 
has been at the crux of transition countries' struggle to 
from a totalitarian, centrally-planned economies to market 
democracies.  In the words of CERGE-EI, "experience in the 
post-communist world has demonstrated that early intervention 
to establish an effective higher education system is a 
critical component of supporting the enormous political and 
social changes necessary to build democracy and prosperity." 
 
--------------------------------------------- ---------- 
Competence in Professional Skills, Sound Management and 
Financial Practices 
--------------------------------------------- ---------- 
¶8.  CERGE-EI is a tax exempt (IRS 501C3 status) institution 
subject to U.S. audits.  Its 2003 budget was USD 3.0 million, 
excluding grant-finance expenditures on research and other 
programmatic activities.  2003 income sources break down as 
follows: 
 
26.7 percent Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic; 
22.1 percent affiliate Charles University; 
13.5 percent Corporate Donations; 
14.4 percent International Organizations; 
8 percent Earned Income including Grant Overheads; 
7.7 percent Individual Donations; 
6.7 percent Interest & Endowment Income; 
0.9 percent Foundation & Government grants. 
 
2003 expenses breakdown as follows: 
26.4 percent Permanent Faculty; 
18.4 percent Student Stipends & Mobility; 
12.7 percent Physical plant & Building renovation. 
10 percent library; 
8.6 percent support staff 
7.1 percent materials & supplies; 
6.4 percent Development & Public Relations; 
4.4 percent Senior Part-time faculty; 
4.3 percent Computer Department; 
1.7 percent seminar & research support 
 
----------- 
The Library 
----------- 
¶9.  Established in 1992, it is simply the best economics 
library in the Czech Republic, and one of the best in Central 
and Eastern Europe.  Econoffs toured the library and were 
impressed by the number of recognizable U.S. economic texts 
(used for introductory and intermediate micro- and 
macro-economic courses) and U.S. economic journals.  The 
estimated number of registered users of the library is 
currently about 2000.  The library contains 25,000 books and 
270 periodicals, including journals published by:  American 
Economic Association, American Statistical Association, 
Brookings Institutions, University of Chicago Press, 
University of Wisconsin Press, MIT Press, Cornell University. 
Over 600 full-text on-line journals are available in the 
electronic library.. 
 
¶10.  The CERGE-EI library contains THE most extensive and 
up-to-date economics collection in Central and Eastern 
Europe, with over 80,000 printed items and subscribe to over 
250 periodicals and electronic databases.  One of the first 
open-stack facilities in the region, the CERGE-EI library is 
widely used by the general public as well as by students from 
other institutions.  Since December 1994, it has been a 
depository library of the World Bank.  Computer facilities 
include a UNIX lab with high-capacity works stations and 
several PC labs.  The ratio of computers to students is among 
the highest in Europe. 
 
------------------------ 
Local & Embassy Comments 
------------------------ 
¶11. Econoffs conducted interviews with four local contacts 
from government and business sectors, as well as with 
locally-hired staff at the Embassy who interact with 
CERGE-EI.  CERGE-EI is a highly regarded institution, 
particularly known for its independent, intellectual and 
theoretical academic content, and with the best library in 
the country.   Any criticism of CERGE-EI tends to be its 
"over" emphasis on theory versus applied economics.  In June 
2005, the Ambassador commended CERGE-EI for its continued 
leadership in higher education and success in building 
partnerships with American and other international university 
and training programs.  In the Embassy's efforts to support 
Czech-American cultural and educational exchanges, we are 
continuing our partnership with CERGE-EI through the 
Embassy's Office of Public Affairs.CABANISS

UNIX in general is hardly mentioned in Cablegate (only 3 occurrences in a quarter of a million cables).

09.16.11

Cablegate: Lord Mandelson Meets the Qaddafi Family and Dates the Copyright Lobby

Posted in Cablegate, Europe at 6:50 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Leila Deen and Lord Mandelson
“Business secretary Peter Mandelson is slimed by an environmental protestor outside the Royal Society on Carlton House Terrace, Pall Mall after allegations of ‘favours for friends’ over the Heathrow third runway decision” [Courtesy of “Plane Stupid”, via Wikimedia]

Summary: Diplomatic cables mention the acts of Lord Mandelson; we look at those of greater relevance to Techrights

According to the following Cablegate cables, “a recent meeting between Business Secretary Lord Mandelson and Qaddafi’s son Saif al-Islam” took place just 2 years ago (first cable below, dated 24 Aug 2009). For those who lack some context, Peter Mandelson tends to meet Hollywood billionaires and then pass unwanted laws that make those billionaires richer and everyone else furious, especially but not exclusively in the UK. Our technology rights have been eroded almost single-handedly by this man, who summoned harmful digital/technical policies in the UK during his reign. These policies are exceptionally hard to retract now, so we are stuck with an atrocious legacy of Internet spying and potentially disconnection.

We at Techrights decided to see what happens behind the scenes. We tried to find cables on it. Almost 200 Cablegate cables mention “Mandelson” and several are about the policies above. There is one cable about copyright and “IPR”. In relation to China and WTO rules, ¶7 in the second cable below says: “Tanaka explained that METI sees some progress in its dealings with the Chinese government. In recent talks with Chinese Supreme People’s Court and the Procuratorate, the GOJ raised the issue of thresholds and the Chinese acknowledged that the issue is a problem of IPR enforcement. However, the Chinese officials claimed that the issue is not just a matter of law, but more a social problem which needed to be dealt with through public education. Harsh laws would not work, they said, citing a story about the failure of an ancient Chinese emperor which was repeated by other Chinese officials, also. Tanaka pointed out that now the National People’s Congress also wants to insert itself into the discussion and has declared that the Chinese government must consult it when determining the interpretation of its laws.”

“Tanaka asked about the EU’s position on the case and McCoy replied that the EU is studying the issue, and that the final decision will probably be a political decision taken by EU Trade chief Peter Mandelson.”

There is something else which is interesting here.because once again we see Japanese officials pressuring China to change its laws. There are other cables that show this

Another cable (third one below) states in its first paragraph:.”Embassy delivered reftel talking points to Knut Bruenjes, Deputy Director General for Trade Policy, at the Ministry of Economics and Technology, August 11, 2006. Bruenjes said German officials are aware of the seriousness of the IPR violations involving trademarks and copyrights occurring in China, but would prefer to pursue a dialogue with China before seeking consultations at the WTO. He said Germany supported EU Trade Commissioner Mandelson’s timeline for dialogue with China on IPR issues until roughly the end of 2006. He said Germany would urge the Commission to prepare for the likelihood it would have to seek recourse in the WTO after Mandelson’s timeline expires. Bruenjes agreed to put this issue on the EU’s 133 Trade Committee’s agenda in the next few weeks.”

When it comes to Mandelson’s Digital Economy Bill and encounter with Geffen, we were empty-handed (maybe the cables do not go back far enough in time, “Digital Economy Bill” yields zero results/matches), but below are some of the more prominent 14 cables that mention Lord Mandelson. Some of these are interesting reading material in general.

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Cablegate: “IBM Have Advocated That High Quality Software Patents Would Also Have Significant Value”

Posted in Asia, Cablegate, IBM, Patents at 7:05 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Summary: IBM is proving yet again that it is working to spread software patents even outside the United States, painting itself part of the problem

IN A CABLE from Beijing we find more evidence of IBM’s lobbying for software patents, which is not surprising. But in this case, IBM joins the Japanese push to put software patents even in China. IBM is a proprietary software giant and increasingly a private bank (loans) that also sells services and patents (e.g. to Google). Here is the Cablegate cable in full:

Read the rest of this entry »

09.15.11

Cablegate: Microsoft’s “Relationship With the Government” and Pressure for Countries to Adopt Intellectual Monopolies Using Shame Lists

Posted in America, Cablegate, Microsoft at 6:03 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cablegate

Street lamp

Summary: A collection of almost a dozen cables showing how sanctions and lists of shame are being used to help plant seeds for Microsoft et al. all around the world

TODAY we are going to go through a lot of material and summarise everything of relevance upfront. We will start with Turkey's sanction siege, which was intended to make it more West-esque so as to benefit multinationals (mostly US-based companies). Turkey is not alone and today we’ll deal with 4 countries as examples of interest from all around the world.

Turkey is being put on shame lists, where laws need to be changed n order to get the country off those lists. Think along the lines of sex offenders list, terrorists watchlist, “wanted” mug shots at the police station, server/IP blacklist, etc.

In the first cable, under ¶7, Turkey is mentioned in relation to the BSA. To quote:

As noted in ref A points, the GOT requires that all software
used on government computers be licensed. However, Turkey’s chapter
of BSA has heard anecdotally that the estimated piracy rate on
government computers is approximately 50 percent. They emphasized
to us, however, that they believe that the government is acting in
good faith and trying to eliminate pirated software use by
government officials. Comment: The head of the Turkey office of a
major U.S. software producer told us that he doubts the utility of
such proclamations in relatively more-developed countries like
Turkey and agreed that the Government is working to reduce internal
piracy. He also said that an agreement had more symbolic than
practical value, given that there is no centralized point for
government software procurement. In 2006, Microsoft CEO Bill Gates
visited Turkey and announced his plans to support a techno-park in
Istanbul and invest more in Turkey, which he characterized as a
regional technological base. Microsoft and other companies, like
Cisco, have close cooperative relationships with the government of
Turkey.

Later on we find examples from Serbia and Montenegro, staring with a cable in which ¶11 says:

On February 1, 2006, Montenegrin Prime Minister Milo
Djukanovic together with Bill Gates signed a three-year
contract, providing software licenses to Montenegrin
educational and scientific institutions. In September 2005,
the GoM and Microsoft concluded a USD 2.36 million contract,
creating a strategic partnership between the GoM and
Microsoft for legalization of all the Microsoft software
being used by state institutions. By mid-March, Microsoft
and local governments in Montenegro will have completed the
licensing of software used by the municipalities.

In the next cable, under ¶5 which has the heading “Microsoft Engages in Montenegro”, it says:

(U) Microsoft is working with the GoM and with private
business to increase the use of licensed software in
Montenegro. After meeting with PM Djukanovic, Bill Gates
announced Microsoft would provide software on favorable
terms to Montenegro’s educational and scientific sector. In
the private sector, Microsoft will team with NGO Montenegro
Business Alliance to educate business about intellectual
property rights.

The Business Alliance is Microsoft’s thug. Microsoft uses it to distance itself from enforcement (imprisonment, fining, etc.) and bad PR.

Moving on to a cable from Indonesia , in ¶7 we find that

On January 13, the Ministry of Information and
Communications Technology and Microsoft signed an MOU on
legalizing all GOI Microsoft software. President Yudhoyono,
on his own initiative, personally led the effort to sign the
MOU, following his 2005 meeting with Microsoft Chairman Bill
Gates. It is estimated that 90 percent of GOI computers use
pirated versions of Microsoft operating systems and
software.

Bill Gates sure gets around, does he not?

Another Cablegate cable, this one also about the “SPECIAL 301 INITIATIVE RESPONSE,” comes from Slovakia and in ¶9 it says:

According to industry experts, software piracy has
noticeably decreased in Slovakia. Microsoft’s Bill Gates
said during his visit to the country in January 2004, “We
have registered a decline in software piracy in Slovakia.”
Based on the Microsoft’s Enterprise Agreement with the GOS
signed in 2002, all copyrights of Microsoft software being
used in the state administration have been purchased by
Slovak authorities for a total of USD 13 million
(representing a 65 percent discount on the regular price).
In 2001, a similar agreement was signed between Microsoft
and the Slovak Chamber of Physicians and in 2004, Slovakia
joined Microsoft’s worldwide project “Partners in
education.”

Got to love Mr. Gates and his ‘charity’, changing laws around the world, for power and profit. Here are the cables in question. From Turkey:

Read the rest of this entry »

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