Saturday, November 18, 2006

Thailand's IP double standards -- the baby lizard with the forked tongue wants somethng for nothing

Why don't the Thais get rid of the IT black market at nearly every shopping mall in Bangkok, Panthip in particular, before whining about someone patenting a drink with lychee flavoring in it, or bitching to the WTO about shrimp import quotas. Last I checked, the WTO considers intellectual property rights to be an important element of cross border trade that each and every member is expected to do their part to uphold and protect. Thailand has failed miserably at this, due to lack of honest effort. If the US decided to take this to the WTO, I am sure they would 'win'. But as a certain Thai trade negotiator is about to find out, 'winning' at the WTO is not the same as winning favorable trade for your country. That is done through trust, mutual respect for protocol, and competent negotiation between the two countries. The US side keeps showing up, ready to do business, but where are their competent counterparts on the Thai side?

Re: "Warning over Apec-wide FTA", Business, November 16.

This article warns about the possible dangers of an Asia-Pacific free trade area and the fact that the US wishes to enforce its intellectual property rules.

Some time back, a letter from a Thai professor stated words to the effect that, "Those cunning Americans will enforce ... IT rules ... [which would] cost Thais billions".

A few days later there was an article about an American company that wanted a patent on some kind of Thai fruit drink. This was met with fierce opposition in Thailand and a vehement desire to protect Thailand's intellectual property.

I don't care if the US trades with Thailand or not, but how do you deal with people who admit to being pirates and have two sets of standards?

Raymond O'Neal