Concerns Arise Over Implementation Of WIPO Development Agenda14/05/2013 by Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch 1 CommentShare this Story:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (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)IP-Watch is a non-profit independent news service and depends on subscriptions. To access all of our content, please subscribe now. You may also offer additional support with your subscription, or donate.This week’s meeting of the World Intellectual Property Organisation committee on development started with a firm display of divergent positions by member states. Developing countries said that member states should be consulted on WIPO’s participation in international events to ensure that a balanced view on IP is reflected. Developed countries said they considered it as superfluous micro-management of the UN organisation. The 11th session of the Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP) is taking place from 13-17 May. It is usually a theatre of tensions between developing and developed countries. Many issues have been unresolved for a number of sessions and pushed to further discussions. The committee is assessing how WIPO is implementing the recommendation of its Development Agenda in its activities.At the outset of the meeting, Brazil, on behalf of the Development Agenda Group (DAG), said in its opening statement [pdf] that the DAG was created in 2010, “with the aim to pursue the effective implementation of the Development Agenda.” The CDIP, the delegate said, plays an important role in coordinating, promoting, and monitoring the implementation of the WIPO Development Agenda, which was “a milestone in achieving the historic aspiration of developing countries for an international perspective of IP more responsive to their realities.”Although the DAG acknowledges progress made by WIPO in the implementation of the Development Agenda, Brazil said, the group is concerned that “member states may not be maintaining the same commitment to the effective implementation of the Development Agenda at this point in time.” The delegate also underlined a situation in which he said “there is a general difficulty in moving forward and taking decisions… even the implementation of the mandate that created the CDIP turns out to be an issue for member states.”The African Group said the CDIP had to come to an agreement as to which WIPO committees are relevant to report on their contribution to the Development Agenda. The Program and Budget Committee (PBC) and the Committee on WIPO Standards (CWS) do not report on the subject to the General Assembly, which has been a contentious issue between developing and developed countries.DG Report, Coordination MechanismWIPO Director General Francis Gurry presented his report [pdf] on implementation of the Development Agenda, which was the only item under consideration in the item 6 of the draft agenda [pdf].Item 6 relates to monitoring, assessment, discussing and reporting on the implementation of the Development Agenda, which is the main function of the Coordination Mechanism. The CDIP Coordination Mechanism was set by the WIPO General Assembly in 2010 to fulfil the functions of agenda item 6.In its statement [pdf], the DAG complained that the only document for discussion under agenda item 6 was the director general’s report. Although satisfied that the report covered a “very broad range of initiatives under WIPO,” the group would have preferred more information on the activities mentioned in the report.It would be important that the DG’s report not be limited to factual information but also include an evaluation on the impact of the activities described in the report in the context of the implementation of the Development Agenda, the delegate said.WIPO Participation in International ForaIn particular, the DAG asked to be provided with more information on the nature of WIPO’s participation in other United Nations agencies, such as the Millennium Development Goals Task Force and the UN conference on sustainable development (Rio+20). A report on those contributions would increase transparency and would allow member states to contribute to WIPO’s participation, the group said.The African Group concurred. An Algerian delegate, on behalf of the African Group, said WIPO should be expressing the views of all members when participating in other UN activities. South Africa also asked that more information be provided on the WIPO contribution in various international fora.Most developing countries who took the floor said they valued WIPO participation in international fora but would like more information on the nature of this participation. The African Group further said that it is important to know the mandate of the WIPO secretariat to participate in those discussions. Member states, the delegate said, should be informed and should guide the secretariat in its participation.The African Group said member states’ positions on key issues are sometimes divergent or even contradictory, and member states need to know what kind of message WIPO is delivering when it participates in important meetings. It requested more feedback and information sessions before WIPO participates in those meetings in order to enable members to guide the secretariat. India agreed and shared concerns about the content and the right of members to be informed in advance.Group B developed countries said they favour of transparency but do not deem it necessary to “micro-manage” the WIPO secretariat on its interventions at international events. Developing countries who took the floor such as Pakistan said this was not micro-management, nor a lack of confidence in WIPO, but a mere wish to know what WIPO is saying on behalf of member states.Conference on IP and DevelopmentSome disagreements also arose in the context of a conference on IP and development, whose terms of references were agreed upon after informal consultations and are the object of a WIPO secretariat document.In this document, it is indicated that the WIPO secretariat is requested to select speakers “based on geographical balance, appropriate expertise, and balance in perspective.”At stake was the list of speakers to be invited to the conference set to take place from 14-15 November. Developing countries were of the view that the list of speakers should be submitted by the WIPO secretariat for approbation by member states.The European Union and the United States asked that the private sector also be invited to the conference as observers. Group B countries said they trusted the WIPO secretariat to invite relevant speakers and did not see the necessity of holding informal meetings to select speakers, although they welcomed receiving the list of speakers.Once again, the Group B countries said there was no need for member states to micro-managed the WIPO secretariat. Egypt suggested that each region propose a list of speakers during consultations to agree on a final list.Ultimately, it was agreed that the WIPO secretariat would prepare a list and other information and then circulate it to regional coordinators for confirmation. Share this Story:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (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)RelatedCatherine Saez may be reached at email@example.com."Concerns Arise Over Implementation Of WIPO Development Agenda" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.