India Releases New Intellectual Property Policy; Reactions Building 13/05/2016 by William New and Patralekha Chatterjee for 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 Indian government today released its long-awaited new intellectual property policy, and preliminary reactions appear to be that it caters to international pressures while attempting to provide a national focus. A more careful reading with reactions will follow. The 28-page National Intellectual Property Policy of India is available here. The official press release is here. The new policy was released Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India (DIPP), of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. “An all-encompassing IPR Policy will promote a holistic and conducive ecosystem to catalyse the full potential of intellectual property for India’s economic growth and socio-cultural development, while protecting public interest,” the policy states. “The rationale for the National IPR Policy lies in the need to create awareness about the importance of IPRs as a marketable financial asset and economic tool.” The first objective of the policy is to “IPR Awareness, Outreach and Promotion.” A key aim of the policy is to get India to generate more IP rights. On another note, objective 3, Legal and Legislative Framework, is noteworthy. It talks about the possibility of steps which Review existing IP laws, where necessary, to update and improve them or to remove anomalies and inconsistencies, if any, in consultation with stakeholders; Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said today that the IPR policy is compliant with World Trade Organization. A video of his announcement of the new policy, along with highlights of his remarks, is available here. Initial reactions from industry suggest that they are happy. Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, chair and managing director of Biocon Limited, said India has its stood its ground on the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), while respecting genuine innovators and start-ups. Earlier, health activists had expressed concern about what they call an over-emphasis on IP enforcement. D G Shah, secretary general of the Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance, raised concern for India’s generics industry. He highlighted to Intellectual Property Watch three key observations from the Finance Minister’s statement: First: “For example, Pharma patents for public healthcare. We need a balancing act in such areas.” Second: “We need this so that cost of medicines don’t get affected because patents may give rise to a monopolistic situation, hence a balancing act is needed.” To which Shah said: “Having justified the current IPR regime for medicines, the government has tried to assuage USTR [the United States Trade Representative’s office] and the Big Pharma by the following balancing statement: “The third is that there is a legislative framework for this, and we believe that our existing laws, they are all WTO compliant, and as and when global trends move forward, a continuous evolution of these laws will always be required.” “The ‘evolution’ is a matter of concern because it has moved in one direction only, pressured by the developed countries,” said Shah. “Hence, unless the government is ready with funding and programmes to ensure access to medicine for all, any change in the legislative framework would hurt not only the generic industry, but the people of India.” 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.Patralekha Chatterjee may be reached at email@example.com."India Releases New Intellectual Property Policy; Reactions Building" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.