3. The Chairman said that, since the Council's last meeting, notifications under Article 4(d) of the TRIPS Agreement had been received from Cyprus and Romania. In addition, Hungary had notified that it was not a party to any international agreement which entered into force prior to the entry into force of the WTO Agreement, granting a specific advantage, favour, privilege or immunity to nationals of any country, in the area of the protection of intellectual property rights. These three notifications had been distributed in the IP/N/4/- series of documents.
4. The Chairman recalled that, at the Council's July meeting, there had been a further exchange of views on the difficulties that were being experienced with regard to notifications under Article 4(d) and it had been decided that further informal consultations should be held. Reporting on these consultations, he said that they had focused on the factors that might be relevant to deciding whether a notification was to be made under sub-paragraph (d) of Article 4, and in particular on those listed in paragraph 6 of the Secretariat informal background note of 25 April 1996. There had been a wide feeling that this paragraph contained useful criteria or yardsticks for each Member to take into account in deciding what to notify under Article 4(d) or in reviewing the notification. However, there had been a proposal for an additional element of clarification to be included and agreement on the paragraph could not be reached at this stage. While there appeared to be a general acceptance that further work needed to be done on notifications under Article 4(d), for example on the question of a possible format, there had been a difference of view as to whether that should be undertaken at this time, or be postponed until a later date. He would continue to consult with delegations to see whether a common way forward could be found.