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

H.E. Ambassador Dr. Walter Werner
41.   Ecuador would like to confirm the views it expressed at previous meetings regarding these issues and the need to review Article 27.3(b) of the TRIPS Agreement. 42.   We reiterate our position that patents for all life forms and parts thereof should be prohibited, as life forms and parts thereof cannot be considered tradeable goods subject to possible inventions. Viewing them as such would endanger or negatively affect them. 43.   It is important that the TRIPS Agreement and the Convention on Biological Diversity are mutually supportive in their objectives, in particular as regards access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from their utilization, and prior informed consent. Regarding the utilization of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge, it is vital to disclose both the origin and source in the country that provided the genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge. In this context, it is important to have multilateral legal instruments that can improve the utilization and protection of genetic resources, traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions, since the absence of clear regulations on intellectual property rights over living organisms has allowed for the proliferation of practices such as biopiracy and bioprospecting. 44.   Lastly, we would like to insist on our request that the Secretariat update the factual notes on the relationship between the TRIPS Agreement and the Convention on Biological Diversity, the review of the provisions of Article 27.3(b) of the TRIPS Agreement, and the protection of traditional knowledge, which were last updated in 2006. As you already know, the aim of this request is to ensure that Members have updated elements of analysis that can enrich the discussions on these issues, without prejudice to each Member's individual position. We call on the delegation of the United States to show flexibility in its position so as to enable the Secretariat to update the aforementioned factual notes and, in this way, advance the work of this Council.
The Council took note of the statements made and agreed to revert to the matters at its next meeting.
14.   The Chair proposed that, following past practice, agenda items 3, 4 and 5 would be addressed together. He noted that there had been important developments in these areas in many WTO Members. However, these developments had not been shared with the Council. Particularly, there had been no response or update to the Illustrative List of Questions on Article 27.3(b) (IP/C/W/122) since 2003; and only 25 Members had responded at all. Likewise, there had been no notifications to the TRIPS Council of domestic laws that related to the protection of genetic resources and traditional knowledge. He encouraged delegations to submit responses to the Checklist or update their previous responses; as well as to notify any relevant changes in legislation. At the previous meeting, delegations had continued their discussion on two long-standing procedural issues, namely the suggestion first made in November 2012 that the Secretariat update the three factual notes on the Council's previous discussions on TRIPS/CBD and related items; and the proposal initially submitted in October 2010 that the CBD Secretariat be invited to brief the Council on the Nagoya Protocol to the CBD. He said that he had no new developments to report in this regard.
15.   The representatives of India, South Africa, Ecuador, China, the Plurinational State of Bolivia, the United States of America, Japan, Brazil, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, Indonesia and Chile took the floor.
16.   The Council took note of the statements made and agreed to revert to the matters at its next meeting.
IP/C/M/91, IP/C/M/91/Add.1, IP/C/M/91/Corr.1