What Is Trips Agreement?

The TRIPS Agreement and the Protection of Intellectual Property, The 2003 Agreement on Drug Export, TRIPS Council: Technical Assistance to the WTO and more about what is trips agreement.. Get more data about what is trips agreement.

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The TRIPS Agreement and the Protection of Intellectual Property

The minimum standards agreement of the TRIPS Agreement allows Members to provide more extensive protection of intellectual property if they so choose. Members are free to determine the best way to implement the provisions of the Agreement within their own legal system. The databases that include data that is not protected under copyright will be protected as such under the law.

If the selection or arrangement of the contents constitute intellectual creations, then the Databases are eligible for Copyright protection. The provision confirms that databases have to be protected regardless of their form, whether machine readable or not. The provision states that the protection of the data or material itself will not extend to the data or material itself.

The basic rule is that any sign that can distinguish one undertaking from others must be eligible for registration as a trademark, provided that it is visually noticeable. The signs in question must be eligible for registration as trademarks if they include personal names, letters, numerals, and combinations of colors. The protection of independently created industrial designs that are new original is required by the TRIPS Agreement.

If designs do not significantly differ from known designs or combinations of known design features, members may provide that they are not new original. Members may provide that protection is not extended to designs dictated by technical or functional considerations. The owner of a protected industrial design has the right to prevent third parties from making, selling or import articles bearing or substantially copying a design that is protected by the design.

The agreement contains provisions on data that is not public and which is required by governments to approve the marketing of pharmaceutical or agricultural chemical products. The data must be protected against unfair commercial use. Members must protect the data against disclosure except where necessary to protect the public or if steps are taken to ensure that the data are protected against unfair commercial use.

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The 2003 Agreement on Drug Export

The 2003 agreement allows developing countries to export drugs to other countries if they are not part of a commercial or industrial policy. Drugs exported under this regime may be packaged differently in order to prevent them from being used in the developed world.

TRIPS Council: Technical Assistance to the WTO

The operation of the agreement is monitored by the TRIPS Council. The council serves as a place for discussion between members on key issues. The main objective of the WTO's technical assistance activities is to help members and observers implement an intellectual property regime that meets their domestic policy objectives. The activities recognize that policy choices within the framework are important to a broader policy context.

Can vaccines be available in western countries?

If the vaccines are patent protected, only a few pharmaceutical companies from western countries would be able to make them, making them unavailable or difficult to find in other countries.

The WTO and the GATT Protocols

The GATT signed in 1994 brought TRIPs as a common standard for the protection of intellectual property globally. The TRIPs provisions make it difficult for member countries to design domestic intellectual property legislations. The member countries are required to prepare a legal framework spelling out the scope and standards of protection for intellectual property rights.

The member countries have to adopt TRIPs provisions in their domestic intellectual property legislations. Intellectual property is a trade related asset and the WTO supports it. It says that an international attempt is needed because of the differences intellectual property regimes.

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The TRIPS Agreement: An Improved Intellectual Property Rights Convention

Under the article, members may provide more extensive protection of the intellectual property if required, but are not obligated to do so. The members of the TRIPS agreement are left to decide the most appropriate method for implementation within their own jurisdiction. The general consensus is that the TRIPS Agreement is a significant improvement over previous intellectual property rights agreements. Encouraging and rewarding innovation has helped facilitate international trade.

The Road ahead for generic medicines

If pharma companies are only allowed to grant licenses to other drug manufacturers, global markets will not have enough reach. A temporary TRIPS agreement waiver won't be a panacea for countries who want access to life-saving vaccines. The road ahead is long and, in the absence of cooperation from large pharmaceutical innovators, competing generic medicines producers are not likely to get up and running immediately.

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The need for higher level of protection in developing countries

The developing countries are concerned about the higher level of protection demanded by the developed world. They fear that if protection is given in a way that is not bilateral, it will reduce competition and lead to price rise of medicines in poor countries.

The TRIPS failure to accelerate investment and technology in low-income countries

The inability of trips to accelerate the flow of investment and technology to low-income countries has been a focus of critics. The World Bank says that TRIPS have not accelerated investment in low-income countries, whereas they may have done so for middle-income countries. The excessive slowdown in generic drug entry and competition was determined by examining long periods of patent validity.

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Microorganisms in the Era of TRIPS

The agreement on TRIPS also covers the level of microorganisms. Research in the organisms is related to the development of agriculture, pharmaceuticals and industrial biotechnology. Large Multinational Corporations will benefit from the patenting of the microorganisms as they already have patents in several areas and will acquire more at a much faster rate.