118. The representative of Australia said that the proposal of amendment of the TRIPS Agreement to implement the disclosure requirement was premature. She recalled that, at the Council's meeting in June 2006, Members had had fact-based discussions on the relationship between the TRIPS Agreement and the CBD, on alleged cases of biopiracy, and on the role of the patent system in this context. However, despite the amount of information presented and the useful exchange, it was clear that Members came to different conclusions both in relation to the existence and extent of the problem or conflict and the role, if any, of the patent system and in particular the TRIPS Agreement, in addressing the problem. She noted that Peru's latest submission acknowledged that the camu-camu case was not necessarily a proven case of biopiracy but a potential case, which at least resolved one factual disagreement, although others remained, such as the turmeric case. As Members had reached different conclusions, the disclosure proposals did not attract consensus.
119. She said that Brazil's submission IP/C/W/475 was useful in revealing the complexity of the issue and the fundamental differences in approach even between those who were willing to consider mandatory disclosure requirements. If Members started with the position that the TRIPS Agreement must be changed and papered over the very significant disagreements by moving to text-based discussions, they would not be able to get very far in this regard. Therefore, her delegation disagreed with the proposal of Brazil and others to start text-based discussions. She said that there was a need for a more thorough consideration of Members' access and benefit-sharing regimes. In light of this, her delegation had provided the Council with information about Australia's own regime set up under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, which had entered into force in December 2005.
120. Finally, she referred to the letter addressed to Members of the TRIPS Council from the representatives of biotechnology industries in the United States, Europe and Canada, which, inter alia, acknowledged the concerns over the effectiveness of contract-based systems and the value of looking more closely at these systems. She said that the letter might guide Members in their future work.