At WTO, US Takes A Jab At India’s IP Trade Policy 15/09/2011 by William New, Intellectual Property Watch 4 Comments Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)The United States today took a swipe at India’s intellectual property rights policies and enforcement, asserting that it is out of sync with international practices but stopping short of suggesting that its 2005 IP law is out of compliance with World Trade Organization rules. India passed a major IP law in 2005 as required to comply with the 1994 WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). WTO allows members some room to decide how they implement agreements most appropriately for their national conditions, but India’s law has been critiqued by developed countries and their industries for several provisions. However, no government has directly challenged India’s law. Instead, they offer pressure such as the US did today. Despite the law being relatively new (India amended its patent law in 2005)[corrected], US Ambassador to the WTO Michael Punke attributed India’s success to IP rights and said it would not reach its goals without strengthening and enforcing them. “India’s highly successful creative and innovative industries depend greatly on the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights,” he said in his statement to the 14 September trade policy review of India. “These rights are also prerequisites to the development of a value-added manufacturing sector that India seeks to establish. India’s IP policies and enforcement, unfortunately, do not reflect this imperative.” Punke urged India to make more changes to its laws. “Although India has long been considering legislative and other initiatives to update some of its IP policies, including the Copyright Bill currently before Parliament,” he said, “those efforts tend to fall well short of international best practices in these areas.” He did not suggest that India is out of compliance with WTO rules, however. The WTO Trade Policy Review of India is taking place on 14 and 16 September. The WTO report and a report from India are here. The WTO report said India has taken numerous steps since its last review, but said data is hard to collect because it is still left up to the states. [Update] The United States was not alone in pointing to IP rights issues. According to the trade policy review panel chair’s closing report [pdf]: “Intellectual property: Noting the actions undertaken to strengthen the enforcement of intellectual property rights, including through administrative and legal reforms, Members urged India to continue stepping up efforts in this area, which remained a source of particular concern.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related William New may be reached at email@example.com."At WTO, US Takes A Jab At India’s IP Trade Policy" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.