Interpreting TRIPS: Globalisation of Intellectual Property Rights and Access to Medicines

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9781841139531: Interpreting TRIPS: Globalisation of Intellectual Property Rights and Access to Medicines

For WTO members, the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS) Agreement outlines the minimum standards for Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) protection and offers a global regime for IPR protection. However, the social costs of this regime often outweigh the benefits of IPR protection, particularly in the poorest countries where resources for research and development are inadequate. Today, after more than a decade of intense debate over global IPR protection, the problems remain acute despite limited evidence of co-operation and partnership, most notably in areas such as patent pooling and pricing in respect to AIDS drugs. This book examines the role of IPRs as incentives for innovation against the backdrop of the development and transfer of technology between globalized, knowledge-based, high-technology economies. The book retraces the origins, content, and interpretations of the TRIPS Agreement. It analyzes sources of controversy over IPRs, examining pharmaceutical industry strategies of emerging countries with different IPR policies. The book also draws attention to the fact that TRIPS is only an agreement about principles. Both the TRIPS rules and international customary rules of interpretation are flexible and a great deal depends on domestic policy objectives and their implementation. The author concludes that - for governments in developing countries, as well as for their business and scientific communities - IPR protection should be supporting domestic policies for innovation and investment.

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About the Author:

Hiroko Yamane is a Professor at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies, Tokyo. She teaches International Economic Law, Competition and Intellectual Property. She was a member of the Commission on Intellectual Property, Innovation and Public Health (CIPIH, 2003-06) of the World Health Organization (WHO).

Review:

The strength of Interpreting TRIPS is that it provides a map to the global archipelago of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS).

.Interpreting TRIPS provides a major contribution to world-class thinking in the field and the legal scholar is engaged by the book at multiple levels. The reader will acquire a thorough understanding of TRIPS critical to understanding the relevant policy debates when negotiating international cooperation... despite the doom and gloom surrounding the topic of poverty and access to medicines, Professor Yamane's international approach and optimism to interpreting TRIPS illuminates and informs as to the various attitudes and continuing international deliberations in various jurisdictions over intellectual property laws. She does a tremendous job in making the impact of TRIPS a much less daunting subject. (Janice Denoncourt Intellectual Property Law and Practice)

Although readers may differ as to the degree to which they are persuaded by the author's thesis, they will value her book for the intellectual examination of the relationship between patent protections and access to medicines, and the incorporation of industrial policies to achieve innovation excellence. Reader's will appreciate Yamane's scholarship for highlighting the way in which IPRs can provide a foundation for building local efficiency models in pharmaceutical innovation for public welfare (Thaddeus Manu Queen Mary Journal of Intellectual Property, Volume 2, Number 1)

The readers of all backgrounds will be impressed with the comprehensiveness of her approach and the accuracy of her data, which may lead them to re-examine their own views on the issue of intellectual property protection. (Junji Nakagawa Trade Journal, Tokyo,)

This is a complex book which addresses many issues apposite to the access to medicines from world agreements and organizations such as TRIPS and dispute settlements by the WTO. It has been very well researched and provides much food for thought for both those involved in institutional policy making and local people in need of easy access to medicines. (Ruth Taplin Interdisciplinary Journal of Economics and Business Law, Volume 3, Issue 3)

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