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3 J. World Intell. Prop. 3 (2000)

handle is hein.journals/jwip3 and id is 1 raw text is: 

      TRIPS and the 1999 WTo Millennium Round

 Some Reflections on Future Issues related to Ipps in the WTo and
                the  Way Forward for Developing Countries

                                   Jayashree WATAL*


     Intellectual property is a subject that up until about a decade back was not heard of
by most  policy-makers in developing  countries. With the TRIPS negotiations, part of the
Uruguay   Round   of multilateral trade negotiations of the General Agreement on Tariffs
and  Trade, this subject has been catapulted into the policy limelight in many developing
countries. For  some  time before  this, some developed  countries, notably the United
States, gave the subject top priority. For about a decade, from the 1984 amendments   to
domestic  trade law to the 1994 finalization of the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual
Property  Rights  Agreement,  the  United  States pursued its objectives relentlessly, not
just through unilateral trade measures and multilateral trade negotiations but through its
foreign policy and even  its policy on science and technology. Contrary to expectations,
improvements   to TRIPS  will not figure prominently on the trade Agenda  for some time
to come.  Notwithstanding   the built-in Agenda and  related work in other World  Trade
Organization  bodies, TRIPS has temporarily fallen off the WTo negotiating table and the
focus in the foreseeable future is likely to be on implementation and dispute settlement
rather than on further development.'
     Since  the conclusion of the TRIPS  Agreement,  policy-makers,  lawyers and  others
in many   countries, both  developed  and  developing,  have  closely studied the TRIPS
language  and translated the obligations into law, regulation or procedures. In addition,
innumerable   commentaries have been written on the Agreement, giving different
interpretations of the provisions. There is now an increasing realization that there is an
in-built balance in the TRIPS Agreement  that WTO   Members   can use to place legitimate

    * At present visiting at the Institute for International Economics, Washington, D.C.
    This article draws heavily from Chapter xit of the author's forthcoming book, Intellectual Property Rights in the
 World Trade Organization: The Way Forward for Developing Countries, Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 2000.
 The article has benefited substantively from discussions with Nuno Carvalho,Jacques Gorlin and Adrian Otten; the
 views expressed here are, however, the author's own and should not be attributed to any organization with which
 the author is or has been associated.
    I Joseph Papovich, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative responsible for IP matters, recently sounded much like
 trade officials from India when he reportedly said on 28 June 1999: We would suggest deferring any negotiations
 in the WTO to improve the TRIPs Agreement until we all digest what needs to be implemented for now.: see
 UsTR Official Predicts Difficulty in Forcing Compliance with TRIPs, Inside U.S. Trade, Vol. 17, No. 28, 16 July 1999,
 pp. 10-11. Also see Adrian Otten, Implementation of the TRIPs Agreement and Prospects for its Further Development,
 Journal of International Economic Law, Vol. 1, No. 4, December 1998, pp. 523-536, at p. 531.

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