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Archived updates for Monday, April 18, 2005

WIPO Delegates Leave Empty-Handed

According to Intellectual Property Watch on April 15, 2005, members of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) on Friday failed to agree on the proper role for a permanent committee on technical cooperation that could impact larger efforts by some to reform WIPO toward development issues.

Debate reportedly focused on a proposal by developed countries, drafted by Canada, to broaden the scope of the existing permanent committee on cooperation for development related to intellectual property (PCIPD). Canada reportedly put forward the proposal while key opposing delegations like Argentina and Brazil were out of the room in a regional meeting. The Canadian proposal broadly proposed to enhance innovation and economic growth, the development of national policies and capabilities, and the role of WIPO.

Also dropped from the meeting was a draft meeting summary by the chair. Developing countries said they objected to the summary on the grounds that it is not legally binding and could be used to circumvent WIPO procedure requiring a report agreed to by all participants. That report is due to WIPO's General Assembly at the end of July.

The issue of expanding the permanent committee was seen as key to the fate of the "Development Agenda" a proposal discussed earlier in the week for ensuring developing countries have the flexibilities and benefits they need from the international intellectual property system. The next meeting is June 20 to 22, followed by an unspecified three-day meeting in July.
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