The South Korean government has raised concerns over the Obama administration’s decision to veto a ban on the importation of Apple products that infringe Samsung patents.
As SmartCompany reported yesterday, United States International Trade Commission had found the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPad 3G and iPad 2 3G to infringe on a key Samsung patent, which is essential to transmitting data over 3G mobile networks.
However, the decision banning the Apple products from being imported into the US under section 337 of the Tariff Act was vetoed by United States Trade Representative Michael Froman.
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It was the first time the US ITC had been overruled in 25 years, prompting accusations of “cronyism” in sections of the Korean press.
In a statement issued to South Korean news agency Yonhap News, the South Korean Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy has raised concerns about the Obama Administration’s handling of the issue.
“Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy expresses concerns over the negative effect the decision by the USTR will have on the protection of patents held by (South Korea’s) Samsung Electronics Co.,”
“The ministry will closely observe the upcoming ruling by the US ITC in the patent dispute raised by Apple against Samsung Electronics, which is due on August 9, as well as ensuing decisions by the US administration.”
“The ministry hopes such decisions will be made fairly and reasonably.”
For its part, Samsung claims the patent Apple was originally found to infringe were commercial, rather than a standard-essential patent.
Samsung also filed an appeal in U.S Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit against an earlier decision in its series of patent lawsuits against Apple.