U.S. WARNS EGYPT, ISRAEL OF SANCTIONS
- U.S. WARNS EGYPT, ISRAEL OF SANCTIONS
WASHINGTON [MENL] -- The United States is warning that Egypt and Israel may soon come under
sanctions that would affect the transfer of technology to these Middle East states.
U.S. officials said Washington has determined that Israel has ignored repeated appeals to adhere to
international agreements that concern intellectual property and other business practices. Such
violations, they said, would affect U.S. trade -- particularly in the hi-tech sector -- with the
Such a warning has been relayed by U.S. ambassador to Israel Martin Indyk. Indyk said Israel's
reputation has been declining because of its failure to adhere to international trade standards.
"Israel’s international economic reputation is suffering because of weak law enforcement and other
inadequacies that Israelis and their government should not tolerate," Indyk told an Israeli business
forum earlier this month.
Israel appears on several lists of countries that fail to meet international business standards.One
is the priority watch list by the U.S. Trade Representative office. For the third year in a row,
Washington has determined that Israel has failed to stop the widespread pirating of music, computer
software films and pharmaceutical products in violation of intellectual property rights.
"Sooner or later, and I suspect sooner, this lack of IPR enforcement is going to negatively impact
industries like the hi-tech sector that are key to Israel’s economic future," Indyk said.
Another list Israeli appears on is that of countries that fail to cooperate in the prevention of
illegal money-laundering. Israel is also expected to appear on a new State Department list of
countries that fail to stop the criminal trafficking in people.
U.S. diplomats have urged the business community to lobby the government to enforce Israeli laws
that ensure the battle against copyright theft and money-laundering.
Egypt also appears on the money-laundering list, a move which could endanger the expansion of trade
with Washington. In Cairo, Egyptian officials said the government would introduce legislation that
would crack down on such practices.
Officials said the government has ordered official agencies and banks to adopt new regulations