NEWS FROM ITSUG

Intrastat Review and Impact of EC Copyright Directive on the Trade Partners UK Information Centre

Report of meeting  
of 15 January 2003

The Patent Office is drafting UK legislation to implement in 2003 the EC Copyright Directive 2001/29/EC. Diana McAuley, (Manager, TPUK Information Centre) outlined the resultant implications which relate to changes to Section 29 of the Copyright Design and Patent Act, 1988 and which will restrict photocopying to research for noncommercial purposes.

The Centre is discussing with the Copyright Licensing Agency the grant of a new 'learned society licence' which would cover only 17 (mainly Western European) countries. It is also engaged in contacting publishers for permission to photocopy from their publications under the new situation; existing arrangements cover just under half of the Centre's collection.

From 1 April the Centre's customers will be made aware of the changes and their implications. Details of individual copyright agreements will be shown on the Centre's catalogue.

After ten years experience of Intrastat, the EC inter-trade statistics system, flaws in the legislation and their effect on data quality have become apparent and are being addressed by a review. The failure to enact the SLIM proposals revealed the limited control the EC have over the system and the entrance of 10 new member states would further exacerbate the existing situation. Penny Smith (HMCE) described the nature of current discussion on proposed changes. Terminology was being examined and best practice sought, particularly in areas of quality, adjustments and deadlines.

It was the intention for new Regulations, to be implemented by January 2005 at the earliest, to provide only for Community needs, which would make it mandatory for traders to provide only: VAT registration number, period covered, arrival/dispatch, commodity code, partner country, value, quantity, and nature of transaction. Member states would be free to legislate for their own needs, information such as: country of origin, region of origin/destination, delivery terms, mode of transport, and statistical procedure.