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

H.E. Ambassador Dr Lansana GBERIE
United Kingdom
134.   The United Kingdom remains committed to implementing Article 66.2 of the TRIPS Agreement to promote and encourage technology transfer to LDC Members. We welcome the opportunity to provide insight into one of the projects undertaken by the United Kingdom, to promote such transfer. 135.   The AgriFood Africa project (a part of the wider Global Challenge Research Fund programme) is a project to boost collaboration between the United Kingdom and Africa to develop sustainable management of food production systems in Africa. This project aims to enhance food security, nutrition, and welfare through greater involvement of the private sector, both UK and African, in innovation for agriculture and food systems. For example, through feasibility studies and industrial research projects or social science studies into barriers to the adoption of, or investment in, technologies and innovations in the agriculture sector. AgriFood Africa is delivered through three strands: a. The first is a technology accelerator programme including Seeding Awards delivered by Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC); and industry focussed Research and Development and demonstration activities through the Agritech Catalyst, which is delivered by Innovate UK. The purpose is to accelerate the transition from discovery research to translational development projects by supporting preliminary work or feasibility studies in agri-food technology; b. The second is by linking world-leading knowledge and expertise of academics to business-critical projects, through AgriFood Africa Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, delivered by Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN); c. The third is by connecting the United Kingdom and Africa through events, funding, information sharing, partnering, and networking to increase the impact of AgriFood funded projects and align UK expertise to African challenges, through AgriFood Africa Connect. 136.   Overall, the project aims to fund a portfolio of projects with the potential to accelerate the development and scale of adoption of agricultural and food system innovations to address the challenges faced by agriculture and food systems in Africa. 137.   We hope Members found the highlights of this project informative as agricultural development is fundamental to achieving many of the SDGs in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The Council took note of the statements made and agreed to revert to the matter at its next meeting.
44. The Chair turned to the Council's 20th annual review of developed country Members' reports on their implementation of Article 66.2 of the TRIPS Agreement. Under a Council decision of February 2003, developed country Members are to submit annual reports on actions taken or planned in pursuance of their commitments under Article 66.2 of the TRIPS Agreement. New detailed reports are required every third year, and updates in the intervening years.
45. He recalled that in July 2022, the Council had requested developed country Members to submit updates to their seventh set of new detailed reports in time for the present meeting, and the Secretariat had since circulated a reminder. He also noted that the LDC Group had submitted a proposal of a template for the submission of reports on commitments of developed countries under Article 66.2.
46. He noted that the Council had received new reports from Switzerland, New Zealand, Australia, Norway, Japan, the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States. Since the circulation of the revised draft agenda the European Union had also submitted its report. This documentation was being circulated under the new dedicated document series with the symbol where "R" stands for "Reports" and "TTI" stands for "Technology Transfer Incentives".
47. He said that paragraph 2 of the Council's Decision on the Implementation of Article 66.2 states that the annual review should provide Members with an opportunity to pose questions in relation to the information submitted and request additional information; discuss the effectiveness of the incentives provided in promoting and encouraging technology transfer to least developed country Members in order to enable them to create a sound and viable technological base; and consider any points relating to the operation of the reporting procedure established by the Decision.
48. Some of the information by developed country Members had been received only very recently, and most of it was, so far, available only in its original language. He therefore intended for Members to have an opportunity to make further comments at the next meeting of the Council. This would give Members a chance to study the information recently circulated and any additional information subsequently received.
49. The Chair announced that the Secretariat was once again planning to hold the Article 66.2 Workshop in March 2023, back-to-back with the first TRIPS Council meeting of the year. This would allow LDCs sufficient time to absorb the information provided by developed countries in their reports and would also ensure that these reports are translated. It would further be an opportunity to discuss the LDC Groups' proposal for a template for reporting on commitments under this Article. He indicated that the Workshop would comprise two days of workshop sessions, and a reporting and review segment within the first TRIPS Council meeting of 2023.
50. The representatives of the; the European Union; Australia; the United Kingdom; New Zealand; the United States of America; Japan; Switzerland; Canada; South Africa; Bangladesh, on behalf of the LDC Group; and India took the floor.
51. The Chair suggested that Members be given an opportunity to continue considering the information provided at our next meeting.
52. The Council took note of the statements made and agreed to revert to the matter at its next meeting.
IP/C/M/106, IP/C/M/106/Add.1