U.S. Trade Representative Appoints Chief Counsel for China Trade

By Cassie Duong
Washington File Staff Writer

Washington - U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) Susan C. Schwab has appointed Claire E. Reade to serve as chief counsel for China trade enforcement, according to a June 23 USTR press release.

Reade’s newly created position stems from the USTR’s top-to-bottom review of U.S.-China trade relations since China's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2001.  (See related article.)

The United States aims to “integrate China more fully as a responsible stakeholder into the global rules-based system of international trade and secure its support for efforts to further open world markets,” the USTR review says.  “China must play its part in addressing the global imbalances that have arisen during the past four years of rapid global growth.”

As chief counsel for China trade enforcement, Reade will coordinate USTR’s efforts to ensure that China meets its international trade commitments as the country approaches the end of its transition period as a new WTO member.  Reade will also co-chair USTR’s China Enforcement Task Force.

“We will aggressively enforce the commitments that China made under the WTO and other trade agreements,” Schwab said.  “Claire Reade will bring extraordinary legal talent and energy, as well as decades of top flight international trade litigation experience to our China enforcement efforts.”


Schwab also announced the creation of a new USTR intellectual property office headed by Assistant USTR Victoria A. Espinel.

The new office will direct bilateral discussions with numerous trading partners on a wide variety of intellectual property issues and release the annual “Special 301” report on international IPR protection, according to the USTR press release.  In addition, the office will monitor intellectual property enforcement efforts around the world, with a special focus on priority countries such as China and Russia.  Previously, USTR's Office of Services, Investment and Intellectual Property handled these tasks.

“The creation of a new office at USTR enhances our focus on protecting intellectual property,” Schwab said.

Schwab also designated Stanford McCoy as USTR's new chief negotiator for intellectual property enforcement under the new office.

China agreed to increase intellectual property rights (IPR) protection when it entered the WTO.  However, the USTR review says, “the volume of counterfeit goods from China seized at the U.S. border continues to rise.”

“IPR enforcement is one of China’s greatest shortcomings,” the USTR review says.

According to Schwab, “Americans are among the world’s greatest innovators, in no small part because of the strength of our respect for intellectual property rights in the United States.”

“In the global economy, maintaining protections for American innovators abroad is critical to advancing U.S. competitiveness. Protections of Intellectual Property by other nations is also critical to their own economic development, including promotion of indigenous innovations, creativity and access to innovations by consumers and promoters of innovation,” she said.

For more information about U.S. policies, see The United States and China and Protecting Intellectual Property Rights.

The texts of the announcements on Reade's appointment and the new intellectual property office are available on the USTR Web site.

A copy of the USTR's top-to-bottom review of U.S.-China trade relations (PDF, 29 pages) is also available on its Web site.