WIPO Model Law Needs Revision, Developing Countries Say; Developed Countries Reluctant

Brazilian Delegation at the SCP

The World Intellectual Property Organization provides legislative assistance to developing countries and least-developed countries upon request by individual member states. This week at the WIPO patent law committee, the Latin American and Caribbean Group tabled a proposal to revise the 1979 WIPO model law for developing countries on inventions, arguing it is obsolete.

Panel: Biotech Industry Executives Shine Light On Their IP Management Strategies

Speakers at the biotech industry side event at WIPO

“IP is a very crucial part of our business and I can’t imagine being in biotech without a very strong emphasis on intellectual property,” a biotech industry executive said during a panel organised at the World Intellectual Property Organization yesterday.

South Africa Draft Copyright Amendment Bill Published For Public Comment

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The publication for public comment of the much-anticipated South African draft Copyright Amendment Bill has cautiously been welcomed by some stakeholders, who believe that parts of the draft are unworkable.

New Agenda Adopted For WIPO Committee On Patent Law

The World Intellectual Property Organization committee on the law of patents got a slow start this morning as delegates did not agree on the draft agenda submitted by the secretariat for this session. After informal consultations during the morning, WIPO members accepted a draft revised agenda proposed by the committee chair.

Decision Time On Biologics Exclusivity: Eight Years Is No Compromise

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Burcu Kilic and Courtney Pine write: As the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations approach their endgame, biologics exclusivity is still considered “one of the most difficult outstanding issues in the negotiation.”[2] Pharmaceutical companies seek longer data and marketing exclusivities to further delay market entry of cost-saving biosimilar drugs. Data exclusivity prevents follow-on pharmaceutical developers from relying on originators’ test data submitted for marketing approval while seeking such approval for its own product. The World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) requires some protection against unfair competition for this sort of data, but it does not require countries to adopt rules conveying exclusive rights over it in the same way as it does regarding patents.[3] Currently, the US provides 12 years of exclusivity for new biological products under the Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act (BPCIA).[4] The provision providing 12 years exclusivity was buried inside the 20,000-page healthcare law, The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. A robust debate over what would be an appropriate exclusivity period, if any, was overshadowed by other controversial aspects of the bill commonly referred to as Obamacare.

WIPO Patent Law Committee Seeks To Overcome North-South Divide On Priorities

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The World Intellectual Property Organization patent law committee meets this week with a work programme reflecting strong interests that are not equally shared by member states. Developed countries in the past have focused on ways to share work between patent offices, while developing countries would favour more time being spent on limitations and exceptions to patent rights, in particular in the area of health.

Investor-State Cases Could Have Cost Cash-Strapped Argentina $80B, Paper Says

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A new developing country policy brief warns against use of the investor-state dispute settlement mechanism, arguing that it has a low capacity to adapt to exceptional circumstances that can afflict developing countries.

EU Commissioner Signals Support For LDC Request To Waive IP Rights Enforcement On Pharma

Cecilia Malmström  EU Trade Commissioner

European Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström said in a recent speech that providing she has the backing of the College of Commissioners, the Council and the European Parliament, she would like to answer positively to the request by least developed countries (LDCs) to extend a particular exemption to enforce intellectual property rights on medical products as long as they remain an LDC.

Aid Agencies Hail Agreement On Access To Early Infant HIV Diagnostic Technologies

Community Health Workers Working with HIV-infected Mothers, photo credit USAID

An agreement entered into by a range of international organisations and others announced this week is expected to lower the price of early infant HIV diagnostic technologies by 35 percent, according to the parties.

UNCTAD Official: Need For Policy Coherence In Local Pharmaceutical Production

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Despite progress in recent years to boost local pharmaceutical production in developing countries, policy coherence across the countries is lacking, according to an official at the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).