EU IP Policy Proposals, Initiatives Come Clear At 20th European IP Forum

Christian Peugeot gives the opening speech of the event, photo credit: 20ème Forum Européen de la Propriété Intellectuelle par l’Union des Fabricants

PARIS – A recent gathering of IP owners, lawyers and government officials explored strategies and potential policies to fight counterfeiting and piracy.

Trade Outlook In 2015: The Race Of The Mega-Regionals

RCEP negotiators - or will it be them?

For international trade, 2015 will be “a year of work” rather than of finalisation, as Viviane Reding put it. The comment of the former European Commission vice president and Justice Commissioner focussed on the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA), as she is now the European Parliament’s rapporteur for TISA. The services agreement is still sailing under the radar compared to its bigger cousins, the US-EU bilateral Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP). Yet “a year of work” might well describe the 2015 agenda for the mega-regional trade negotiations too. Will any of them get to the finish line? A race is on in which the United States and European Union seem to anxiously look to China’s advance while fighting rising opposition at home.

USPTO Acting Director Discusses Patent Quality, Pendency, Harmonisation

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At today’s meeting of the “trilateral offices” – the United States, Europe and Japan – Deputy Director of the US Patent and Trademark Office Michelle Lee gave an update of USPTO activities, including improvements in patent quality, patent pendency, and discussions about patent harmonisation.

EPO Hits New Record In Patent Filings; US, China Rise

EPO President Benoît Battistelli

BRUSSELS – In 2014, patent filings at the European Patent Office (EPO) reached an all-time high, as announced by EPO President Benoît Battistelli last week at the traditional Annual Results Press Conference. Among key patenting trends were figures revealing strong growth in filings from the United States and China.

Global Fund Publishes Terms Of Reference Of Equitable Access Initiative

Global Fund

An initiative spearheaded by the Global Fund for AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria to ensure equitable access to medicines in particular in middle-income countries now has a dedicated webpage publishing the terms of reference of the initiative. Also available is the list of high-level participants who attended the first meeting of the initiative held last week.

Design Law Seminar In Geneva Discusses Current Issues And Concerns

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Experts gathered in Geneva recently to discuss current issues and future developments in the protection of industrial designs and its importance, and give practical advice on suitable ways to protect and enforce the design rights.

At EPO, Patent Oppositions To High-Priced Gilead Hepatitis C Drug Pile Up

Gilead Solvaldi tablet

According to a public health advocacy group, there are now as many as 10 oppositions filed at the European Patent Office against the Gilead company’s patent on sofosbuvir, a treatment for hepatitis C. The group has compiled a table showing the filings with links to the documents.

Why The Request By Least Developed Countries For An Extension Of The Transitional Period For Granting And Enforcing Medicines Patents Needs To Be Supported

Ellen 't Hoen

Ellen ‘t Hoen writes: On 24 February 2015 Bangladesh on behalf of the 34 Least Developed Country members (LDCs) of the World Trade Organization (WTO) submitted a request for an extension of the transitional period under article 66.1 TRIPS with respect to pharmaceutical products until the country is no longer classified as LDC.[1] The original extension, set to expire on 1st January 2016, specifically removes the obligation for LDCs to comply with Section 5 (Patents) and Section 7 (Protection of Undisclosed Information) of Part II of TRIPS, including any obligation to enforce rights under these provisions.

It is a little known fact that since the adoption of the 2001 Doha Declaration on TRIPS and Public Health, LDCs have frequently used the extension in day-to-day procurement of low cost generic medicines, in particular to access medicines needed for the treatment of HIV.

South Africa Awaits Patent Reforms With Hope, Concern

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CAPE TOWN – South Africa’s new policy on patents could go to the Cabinet for approval soon, says Doctors without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontières, MSF), one of the organisations spearheading the Fix the Patent Laws campaign in the country.

Ebola Crisis Has Severe Impact On AIDS Response In Sierra Leone, UNDP Report Says

Kenema_Hospital_Sierra_Leone_Ebola1

According to an internal report of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Global Fund Partnership team, the Ebola epidemic has virtually halted national HIV efforts in Sierra Leone. In particular, patients stopped their treatments and the supply chain was disrupted.