MEPs reject ACTA

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) was rejected by the European Parliament in plenary session. This means that it cannot become law in the EU.

MEPs rejected in plenary session the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) following the rejection by the International Trade Committee in June 2012. 478 MEPs voted against ACTA, 39 in favour, and 165 abstained and, although this means that it cannot become law in the EU, the responsible for the report David Martin, stressed the need to find alternative ways to protect intellectual property in the EU.

On the other hand, during the debate celebrated before the vote, MEP Christofer Fjellner asked to delay such final vote until the European Court of Justice has ruled on whether ACTA is compatible with the EU treaties. However, when a majority of MEPs rejected this request, a substantial minority responded by abstaining in the vote on Parliament's consent.

ACTA was negotiated by the EU and its member states, the US, Australia, Canada, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and Switzerland to improve the enforcement of anti-counterfeiting law internationally. Before the vote, Parliament experienced unprecedented direct lobbying by thousands of EU citizens who called on it to reject ACTA, in street demonstrations, e-mails to MEPs and calls to their offices. Parliament also received a petition, signed by 2.8 million citizens worldwide, urging it to reject the agreement.