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

Ambassador Dacio Castillo (Honduras)
181. The representative of India said that one of the important objectives of the TRIPS Agreement enshrined in its Article 7 was that the protection and enforcement of IP rights should contribute to the promotion of technological innovation and to the transfer and dissemination of technology. Developing countries in particular saw technology transfer as a part of the bargain in which they had agreed to protect IP rights. In this regard, Article 66.2 created a legal obligation for developed country Members to provide incentives to their enterprises and institutions to encourage technology transfer to LDCs. The Doha Decision on Implementation-Related Issues and Concerns further reaffirmed the binding nature of this obligation. 182. On the occasion of the tenth annual review, Members needed to reflect whether the legal obligations on developed Members through Article 66.2 had been effective in promoting and encouraging technology transfer to the LDCs, and in creating a viable technological base there. Had the developed countries fulfilled their obligations? If the effectiveness of Article 66.2 for LDCs was not clear, could the LDCs still be required to bear the considerable cost of protecting IP rights by implementing the provisions of the TRIPS Agreement? It was important, he said, to remember that if the LDCs were asked to implement the Agreement without a sound technological base, the technological gap between the LDCs and the rest of the countries would be further widened and they would be marginalized in the global economy. This would defeat the important objective of the Agreement, mentioned in its Preamble, which recognized the special needs of the LDC Members in respect of maximum flexibility for the domestic implementation of laws and regulations in order to enable them to create a sound and viable technological base. Therefore Members, and especially LDCs, had a right to know if there was sufficient evidence to prove whether the trade-off in Article 66.2 had indeed been effective. 183. He said that the motivated request to be presented by the LDCs under "Other Business" for the extension of their transition period beyond 2013 to implement the TRIPS Agreement had to be seen in this overall context. There was therefore an urgent need to revise the monitoring mechanism set up by the TRIPS Council to find out whether Article 66.2 had been effective in inducing technology transfer beyond the business-as-usual approach of most of the developed countries. His delegation would support and actively engage with any proposals from LDCs for effective monitoring of the obligations under Article 66.2.