Globalization and Access to Drugs. Perspectives on the WTO/TRIPS Agreement - Health Economics and Drugs Series, No. 007 (Revised)
(1998; 97 pages) [French] [Spanish] View the PDF document
Table of Contents
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentAbbreviations and acronyms
Close this folderPART I: GLOBALIZATION AND ACCESS TO DRUGS: IMPLICATIONS OF THE WTO/TRIPS AGREEMENT
View the documentExecutive summary
View the documentIntroduction
Open this folder and view contents1. Brief historical background to the international trading system
Close this folder2. Reading the TRIPS Agreement from the perspective of access to drugs
View the document2.1 General presentation of the Agreement
View the document2.2 Fundamental principles and objectives of the Agreement: the necessary balance between intellectual property and accessibility
View the document2.3 Patents for pharmaceutical products and processes available all over the world
View the document2.4 Non-patentable inventions: biotechnology inventions
Open this folder and view contents2.5 Effects of protection: a monopoly of working for 20 years
Close this folder2.6 Application of the TRIPS Agreement
View the documentFor industrialized countries: 1996
View the documentFor developing countries: 2000 or 2005
View the documentFor least-developed countries: 2006
Open this folder and view contents2.7 During the transitional period
Open this folder and view contents2.8 How can the monopoly be limited?
Open this folder and view contents3. Conclusions: issues at stake and constraints on access to drugs
View the documentDefinitions and terminology4
Open this folder and view contentsSelected bibliography5
Open this folder and view contentsPART II: PRESENTATIONS AT THE AD HOC WORKING GROUP ON THE REVISED DRUG STRATEGY HELD IN GENEVA ON 13 OCTOBER 1998
View the documentOther documents in the DAP - Health Economics and Drugs Series
View the documentBack cover
 

2.6 Application of the TRIPS Agreement

With regard to the dates of application of the TRIPS Agreement, a distinction is made between the least-developed countries and developing countries, and also between countries with or without a system of patent protection for pharmaceuticals at the time of the establishment of the WTO.

Article 65
Transitional arrangements

Comments

1. Subject to the provisions of paragraphs 2, 3 and 4, no Member shall be obliged to apply the provisions of this Agreement before the expiry of a general period of one year following the date of entry into force of the WTO Agreement

In general, industrialized countries were only obliged to start applying the provisions of TRIPS in 1996.

2. A developing country Member is entitled to delay for a further period of four years the date of application, as defined in paragraph 1, of the provisions of this Agreement,

Developing countries have 4 extra years to implement the provisions of the Agreement on the different aspects of intellectual property rights, that is, until 1 January 2000.

other than Articles 3, 4 and 5.

During this transitional period, developing countries must nevertheless comply with the obligations on national treatment and MNF treatment.

3. Any other Member which is in the process of transformation from a centrally planned into a market, free-enterprise economy and which is undertaking structural reform of its intellectual property system and facing special problems in the preparation and implementation of intellectual property laws and regulations, may also benefit from a period of delay as foreseen in paragraph 2.

The same period of 4 years is accorded to the former socialist republics under certain conditions.

4. To the extent that a developing country Member is obliged by this Agreement to extend product patent protection to areas of technology not so protectable in its territory on the general date of application of this Agreement for that Member, as defined in paragraph 2, it may delay the application of the provisions on product patents of Section 5 of Part II to such areas of technology for an additional period of five years.

For developing countries that did not grant product patent protection for pharmaceuticals before the signature of the WTO Agreement and have not done so by 1 January 2000, these countries will benefit from a further period of five years - making a total of ten years - to take the necessary steps to ensure such protection.

5. A Member availing itself of a transitional period under paragraphs 1, 2, 3 or 4 shall ensure that any changes in its laws, regulations and practice made during that period do not result in a lesser degree of consistency with the provisions of this Agreement.

During transitional periods, the Member States concerned may continue to apply their old regulations but must not take decisions that are even more contrary to the Agreement.

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