Statement by Cuban Ambassador on Section 211. October 28, 2015
STATEMENT BY H.E. MRS. ANAYANSI Rodriguez Camejo, AMBASSADOR, PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE OF CUBA TO THE UNITED NATIONS OFFICE IN GENEVA AND OTHER INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS BASED IN SWITZERLAND, AT THE DISPUTE SETTLEMENT BODY OF THE WTO ON SECTION 211. October 28, 2015.
The Progress Report No. 154 presented by the United States still does not provide any new information or indications that there is a projection aimed at complying with the recommendations and rulings of the Dispute Settlement Body (DSB) on this WTO's case.
Since 2002, the DSB found that Section 211 of the Omnibus Appropriations Act of 1998 was contrary to the national treatment and most-favoured nation obligations of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), and the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property. However, despite the passing of more than 13 years during which, as a result of the existing default, this dispute has remained under surveillance in the regular monthly agenda of the DSB.
As part of the laws that shape the illegal economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba, Section 211 remains intact and in force hampering the recognition of Cuban brands and patents by US courts and it is an important obstacle for the external sector of the Cuban economy. The blockade is, without doubt, the foundation of the unjustified and prolonged failure of that Member in the dispute concerned.
Under the tenure of the blockade, Cuba presented yesterday October 27 before the General Assembly of the United Nations the draft resolution entitled "Necessity of ending the economic, commercial and financial embargo imposed by the United States against Cuba ", which once again had the overwhelming support of the international community which almost unanimously demanded an end to this policy by the positive vote of 191 countries, out of the 193 UN Member States.
This resolution, while welcoming the reestablishment of diplomatic relations between the governments of the Republic of Cuba and the United States and recognizing the expressed will of the President of that country to work for the elimination of the blockade, expressed the concern that after the adoption of 23 consecutive resolutions on the subject, the economic, commercial and financial blockade against Cuba is still in place.
We urge the United States to respect the will of the international community, expressed in the vote of the 191 UN member states, almost all of which also WTO members, supporting the end of the blockade and, consequently, to fulfill their legal obligations before the DSB, through the immediate adoption of appropriate legislative measures to end this breach, which we know also has serious implications for the credibility of the dispute settlement system of the WTO.
We also wish to express our deep and sincere thanks to the members that every month are in favor of the conclusion of this dispute and that each year in the United Nations General Assembly join their voice and vote for the elimination of the unjust and illegal blockade against Cuba.