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

H.E. Ambassador Lundeg Purevsuren
Benin on behalf of West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU)

311.   On behalf of the group of West African Economy and Monetary Union (WAEMU) countries in Geneva, for which Benin serves as coordinator, I would like to express our sincere thanks to the WTO Secretariat for its technical and logistical support that enabled us to organize the Regional Workshop on Public Health, Intellectual Property and Public Procurement for capital based experts of WAEMU countries, which was held from 2 to 4 July 2019 in Dakar, Senegal. 312.   Thank you, too, to WTO Members for their valuable contributions to the implementation of technical assistance and capacity building programmes. 313.   I would also like to extend special thanks to the WTO's Institute for Training and Technical Cooperation and the other international institutions that played a role in this activity, namely the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Customs Organization (WCO), for their highly appreciated technical and logistical contributions. 314.   The activities that took place over the course of these three days of work enabled us to bring our capital based experts up to date and to equip them to respond to existential concerns, such as the protection of public health, access to existing medicines, and the ability of our local enterprises not only to produce good quality medicines at lower costs but to sell their products on other markets. 315.   The discussions during the regional workshop and the results obtained showed the considerable interest of WAEMU countries in issues concerning intellectual property, government procurement and public health, as well as how to use the flexibility provided to our countries by various international agreements on these issues. 316.   The knowledge acquired during this workshop will most definitely enable our capital-based experts, in synergy with the actions of the WAEMU Commission, to undertake reforms on government procurement and access to high quality medicines, the implementation of which will require more action with the close involvement of stakeholders. 317.   To this end, capacity building and technical assistance initiatives in our countries should be multiplied in order to ensure our greater involvement in the multilateral trading system. 318.   This is why we urge WTO Members and the Secretariat to continue technical assistance initiatives in our countries, particularly on issues relating to the TRIPS Agreement.

The Council took note of the statements made and agreed to revert to the matter at its next meeting.
53.   The Chair recalled that the Council had agreed, at its meeting in June 2019, to hold the annual review of technical cooperation at the present meeting. Developed-country Members had been requested to update information on their technical and financial cooperation activities relevant to the implementation of the TRIPS Agreement. Other Members, who had also provided technical cooperation, were encouraged to share information on these activities. The Secretariat had issued an airgram on 21 June 2019 reminding developed-country Members of this request. Intergovernmental organizations, observers to the Council, and the WTO Secretariat had also been invited to provide information.
54.   The Council had received information from the following developed-country Members: Switzerland, Japan, the United States of America, Norway, Australia, and Canada. Their reports were being circulated in document IP/C/W/655 and addenda. The Council had also received an Advance Working Copy of the report from the European Union and some of its member States. It had been made available as a room document RD/IP/35, on documents online, and would also be circulated as an addendum to document IP/C/W/655 once finalized. The following intergovernmental organizations had also submitted updated information: the GCC, WHO, WCO, UNCTAD, ARIPO and WIPO. Their reports had been being circulated in document IP/C/W/654 and addenda. Updated information on the WTO Secretariat's own technical cooperation activities in the TRIPS area was available in document IP/C/W/658. He invited developed-country Members to introduce their reports on technical cooperation activities.
55.   The representatives of Canada; Japan; the European Union; the United States of America; Norway; Australia; Benin, on behalf of West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU); and Bangladesh took the floor.
56.   The Chair invited the WTO Secretariat to inform the Council of its recent technical cooperation activities.
57.   The representative of the WTO Secretariat took the floor.
58.   The Chair invited the representatives of intergovernmental organizations to introduce their reports.
59.   The representatives of the Secretariats of the WHO, GCC, WIPO, ARIPO, UNCTAD, and the WCO took the floor.
60.   The Chair noted that most of the valuable information provided by Members and IGO observers had been received only very recently; and, that most of it was, so far, available only in its original language. He suggested that Members have an opportunity, at the next meeting of the Council, to make further comments on the information submitted for the meeting.
61.   The Council took note of the statements made and agreed to revert to the matter at its next meeting.
IP/C/M/93, IP/C/M/93/Add.1