RR RUEHFL RUEHNP
DE RUEHRO #1337/01 3101024
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 051024Z NOV 08
FM AMEMBASSY ROME
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1117
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC
RUEAHLC/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
INFO RUEHFL/AMCONSUL FLORENCE 3276
RUEHMIL/AMCONSUL MILAN 9637
RUEHNP/AMCONSUL NAPLES 3433
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 ROME 001337
STATE PLEASE PASS TO EEB/TPP/IPE URBAN, WALLACE, USTR FOR YANG, GROVES, WILSON COMMERCE FOR PAUGH
E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/05/2018
TAGS: ECON ETRD IT KIPR PGOV
SUBJECT: BERLUSCONI GOVERNMENT AND IPR -- FIRST SIGNS OF LIFE
Classified By: DCM Elizabeth Dibble for reasons 1.4 (b,d) First Signs of IPR Direction under Berlusconi Government
1. (C) Summary: Fabrizio Mazza, head of the Intellectual Property Office at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, hopes to
see the GOI form an interministerial committee to deal with IPR, particularly Internet piracy, and would also like to
see discussion of Internet Piracy featured in G-8 meetings during Italy's presidency. He warned, however, that Italian
officials are still angry because they believe the language of the 2008 Special 301 report did not acknowledge Italian
IPR efforts. Mazza admitted that IPR protections are still lacking, but added that future progress could be difficult,
in that policy makers saw their efforts to bring IPR problems to the attention of the public and judiciary go
unremarked. He also predicted that ACTA negotiations will not result in a text by the end of 2008. End Summary
2. (U) This is an action request. Please see paragraph 7.
3. (U) Econoff met Oct. 23 with Fabrizio Mazza, head of the Intellectual Property Office in the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs. Mazza also served in this capacity under the Prodi government.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - SPECIAL 301 REPORT - NO CREDIT TO ITALY - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
4. (C) Mazza said that key GOI officials are angry about the language of the 2008 301 Report. Prior to the last 301
report, he said, Italy put a great deal of effort into getting the ""buy in"" that will allow real change. Raising
discussions of the issue to higher levels of the government was an important part of this, said Mazza. As a result of
these efforts, senior government officials had begun to pressure judges to impose tougher sentences for IPR-related
crimes, something that is particularly difficult politically. While Mazza claimed no one expected Italy to come off the
watch list, he said GOI officials did expect recognition for their efforts. He specifically cited the fact that China
was lauded more forcefully for its IPR protection efforts than Italy.
5. (C) In Mazza's view, efforts to get higher level officials engaged in IPR were working, but those same officials were
taken aback by what he called ""the harshness"" of the 301 report's language. Mazza is eager to continue pushing for
action on IPR protection but indicated that reaction to the report has made it harder to motivate other officials to
continue these efforts.
- - - - - - - - - - HOPE FOR THE FUTURE - - - - - - - - - -
6. (C) Despite reaction to the 301 Report, Mazza says he is primed to begin a new IPR push. He wants to see the
formation of an interministerial committee to deal with piracy issues. He envisions starting a dialogue with Internet
Service Providers. He also envisions creation of some kind of warning or ""cease and desist"" system targeting unlawful
downloading. He asked that the USG engage at higher levels to support the formation of such a committee. He also said he
would like to see a discussion of Internet Piracy introduced into the G-8 during Italy's presidency. He noted this would
need approval from PM Berlusconi, and he implied that U.S. encouragement would help.
7. (SBU) Action Request: Mazza seems to be sounding out a U.S. opinion on injecting IPR and Internet piracy issues into
the G-8 process. Post seeks guidance on how to respond in discussions regarding IPR and the G-8.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - EU COUNTRIES WILL ASK FOR SLOWDOWN IN ACTA NEGOTIATIONS - - - -
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
8. (SBU) Mazza does not expect an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) text by the end of the year. Summer, or
even fall, of 2009 is the earliest he imagined an agreed-upon text would be possible. In his view, European countries
are likely to ask for a slowdown in negotiations because of ROME 00001337 002 OF 002 opposition to the EU commission's
involvement in negotiating portions of the treaty, disagreements over the confidentiality level of the negotiations, and
the absence of geographical indications from the agreement.
9. (SBU) Mazza said member states are opposed to the EU Commission negotiating matters related to criminal enforcement.
Mazza observed that member state competency in this area would make it more appropriate that these points be negotiated
by the EU member state holding the rotating presidency. He said the United Kingdom and Scandinavian countries are
particularly heated in their opposition to the Commission's involvement on these points, but that Italy is also opposed.
10. (SBU) The level of confidentiality in these ACTA negotiations has been set at a higher level than is customary for
non-security agreements. According to Mazza, it is impossible for member states to conduct necessary consultations with
IPR stakeholders and legislatures under this level of confidentiality. He said that before the next round of ACTA
discussions, this point will have to be renegotiated.
11. (SBU) According to Mazza, ACTA is a de facto ""TRIPS Plus"" in the view of many European nations, yet ACTA does not
address geographic indications, which is addressed in TRIPS. He said it's ""only a matter of time"" before a European
delegation points out that this upgrade to TRIPS addresses the key American issues of piracy and counterfeiting but
ignores the key European issue of geographical indications. He indicated that this omission would not be a deal breaker,
but would slow negotiations.
- - - - COMMENT - - - -
12. (C) Though Mazza complains about the USG's supposed failure to recognize Italy's progress, a look at what he is
proposing -- another committee -- demonstrates that Italy is still a long way from taking the kind of enforcement
actions needed to get off the Special 301 list. 13. (C) Nevertheless, we think Mazza is trying to get the GOI to improve
enforcement; we should help him. The fragmentation of IPR protection responsibility in Italy means that for any real
action to take place, officials on many levels from many offices must sign onto the process. Mazza is motivated to push
for IPR action, but he does not have the power to make things happen on his own. He is struggling to get the attention
of his superiors, primarily the IPR Delegate. Italy's current IPR Delegate, Mauro Masi, also serves as Secretary General
of the Prime Minister's Office and is well placed to push for real progress on the IPR front. We dealt with Masi on this
issue under the Prodi government and he is well aware of our concerns and of the several areas where progress in IPR
protection is expected. The Embassy is about to take this issue up again with Masi in an effort to kindle more policy
interest in the Berlusconi government so as to secure commitments in publicly enunciated policy, popular education on
the issues, enforcement, and benchmarking of progress.
End Comment. SPOGLI