Minutes - TRIPS Council - View details of the intervention/statement

Ambassador Vanu Gopala Menon (Singapore)
73. The Chairman recalled that Article 24.2 provided that the Council should keep under review the application of the provisions of the geographical indications Section of the Agreement, and that the first such review should take place within two years of the entry into force of the WTO Agreement. At its meeting in June 2003, the Council had invited those Members that had not provided information in response to the Checklist of Questions contained in document IP/C/13 and addendum 1 to do so. Since the Council's meeting in November 2003, further information in response to the Checklist had been received from Moldova. These responses had been circulated in addendum 29 to document IP/C/W/117. To date, the Council had received responses to the Checklist from 45 Members. At its June 2003 meeting, the Council had also requested the Secretariat to update its note that summarized the information received from Members in response to the Checklist of Questions. This updated summary had now been circulated in document IP/C/W/253/Rev.1. 74. The Chairman further recalled that, at the Council's meeting in November, a number of delegations had said that it would be helpful to have a more structured discussion under this agenda item, and had suggested that he and the Secretariat work together with Members to consider how to carry forward the review. In response to these suggestions, he had concluded the discussion by indicating his intention to hold informal consultations on this matter prior to the Council's next formal meeting. He said that since then he had consulted Members on this issue. In light of these consultations, it appeared that Members were not yet ready to come to a conclusion on how they wished to carry forward the review. Therefore, he was not in a position to make any suggestions in that regard. This seemed to indicate that the Council should keep the matter on its agenda so that Members could revert to the issue of how to structure the review at a later stage.