to a petition filed by the Institute for Research:
Middle Eastern Policy [IRmep] to the US Trade Representative, Israel has
violated important provisions of the US-Israel Free Trade Agreement for
years. The bilateral trade agreement signed in 1985 gave Israel
privileged market access to the United States. The [IRmep] petition
cites a number of trade violations focused on intellectual property
theft over a period of twenty years.
Grant Smith: The ability of Israel to benefit from access to the
US market without tariffs has been immense. It's created a gem diamond
industry for them, it's created a massive
military industrial export capacity for them, it's creating a massive
PressTV: During US Israel FTA
negotiations in 1984 the Israeli government, along with the American
Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)
obtained a classified 300 page document containing trade secrets,
market share, product logistics and other industrial intellectual
property submitted by seventy-six US companies opposed to the treaty
with Israel. Only seventeen lobbied for it.
Years later patented American innovations continue to privately flow to
Israeli manufacturers, namely Israeli generic pharmaceutical makers who
then sell billions of dollars of drugs into the American market.
Grant Smith: As you can imagine, patent medicines are extremely
costly to develop, and those are trade secrets. US companies,
pharmaceutical companies are upset by the weak "data exclusivity"
provisions offered by the [Israeli] Ministry of Health, because they see
their data is not exclusive, it is being leaked almost immediately and
used to their disadvantage.
PressTV: Mr. Smith says TEVA, an
Israeli pharmaceutical corporation is a major concern for questionable
patent practices. Johnson & Johnson, a major US firm successfully
shut down one generic TEVA birth control launch over violation of
its patents. Last week the FDA
recalled two lots of generic Propofol vials due to concerns that the
TEVA manufactured drug had been causing flu-like symptoms and cold
Grant Smith: TEVA is in that business. It's basically in the
business of taking innovations and monetizing them through generics
production. They've [Israel] also got a huge and growing counterfeit
drug industry which masks the generics industry, it's one step down.
They're a top ten global exporter of
counterfeit pharmaceuticals, some of which are exact copies, others
of which are dangerous copies that don't have active ingredients and
actually represent a health risk.
PressTV: The petition recommends
suspending the US-Israel FTA to protect the future wealth creation
potential of American intellectual property, preserve the rule of law,
and enhance governance in the United States through a comprehensive
review of trade relationships between the US and Israel.
In response to the petition filed by the IRmep, the
US Trade Representative issued
this Federal Register notice, indicating they will not initiate an
investigation under Section 301 of the Trade Act
Jihan Hafiz, PressTV, Washington.