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

H.E. Ambassador Dr Lansana GBERIE
United States of America
142.   The United States of America attributes great importance to this review with respect to the obligation under Article 66.2. Our submission this year, is an update to our 2021 report, detailing progress in the past year to programmes aimed to support LDCs in fostering the necessary environment to encourage the effective, voluntary transfer of technology to LDC Members on mutually agreeable terms. The United States submission details programmes ranging from intellectual property and trade capacity building to the health, labour, and environmental sectors. Similar to previous submissions, this report includes comments from host country governments and private sector representatives regarding the value of several programmes listed in the report. 143.   We believe that for Article 66.2 of the TRIPS Agreement to function effectively, there must be a robust dialogue between developed countries and LDC Members. Strong communication between partners is critical to ensuring targeted incentives remain responsive to the self-identified technology transfer interests and needs of LDC Members. The United States strives to make this a priority in all our engagements with our host government partners around the world and will continue to explore ways to improve upon the process as we go forward. 144.   Please allow me to mention some elements contained in our 2022 report, highlighting a few programme updates. Health research through biomedical and behavioural funding activities of United States agencies, have contributed to technology transfer and research capacity strengthening in many LDCs. For new technologies developed by US scientists, NIH licenses biological materials and/or patent rights to institutions that can bring products to the market in or for LDCs. 145.   In Bangladesh, the USAID MaMoni Maternal and Newborn Care Strengthening Project (MNCSP) activity will reduce maternal and neonatal mortality and increase contraceptive prevalence by strengthening the capacity of health systems and facilities through the provision of quality maternal and new-born health care, postpartum planning, and nutrition services. The activity will further strengthen new-born care at all levels. In fiscal year 2022, USAID continues to support the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent to increase the resilience of vulnerable communities in the Solomon Islands and expand the ability of the Solomon Island Red Cross Society (SIRCS) to support its own disaster risk management and community-based health programmes. 146.   The USAID TradeHub supported exporters in Lesotho with trade enhancing services such as organic certifications, and product testing to enhance their competitiveness for entry into the US market. Social compliance certification is becoming central to market-entry requirements, with buyers increasingly considering humane and ethical factory standards, compliance with national laws, and the treatment of garment workers. A private sector partner said, "I would like to thank USAID TradeHub for being very supportive to us as we are now doing a photoshoot of products that we are shipping to the US for Amazon". 147.   Our report describes over 135 programmes just like these, that shows how the US government transforms lives. No report can truly represent every activity that directly or indirectly incentivizes enterprises and institutions for the purpose of promoting and encouraging technology transfer. This report attempts to describe the most significant activities and programmes and to convey the breadth and depth of efforts by the United States of America. 148.   We look forward to further discussing our technology transfer programming with the LDC Members at the annual workshop and we commend the Secretariat for putting together another fantastic workshop during the pandemic.
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