ACTA rejected by EU
The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) was rejected today when the European Parliament’s Plenary voted against it by a majority of 478 to 39.
This means that ACTA cannot come into force within the EU, even though in January of this year most EU Member states signed the initial agreement.
In a statement after the vote, European Parliament President Martin Schulz said the decision was 'not taken lightly' and followed an 'intensive, inclusive and transparent debate'.
"The vote against ACTA was not one against the protection of intellectual property. On the contrary - the European Parliament staunchly supports the fight against piracy and counterfeiting, which harm European companies and pose a threat to consumer health and European jobs."
Mr Schulz went on to explain why the decision was made against the agreement:
"The majority in the European Parliament is of the opinion that ACTA is too vague, leaving the room for abuses and raising concern about its impact on consumers' privacy and civil liberties, on innovation and the free flow of information."
However, ACTA could still be adopted outside the EU, under the condition that six of the eight non-EU countries that have signed it proceed with its ratification.
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