Tentative Remarks on Leaked Canada-EU Trade Agreement Intellectual Property Chapter
[Ante Wessels] Today the German Pirate party published a leaked version of the intellectual property (IP) rights chapter of the EU – Canada trade agreement (CETA), version as of 17 December 2013… At first sight, the chapter does not go beyond EU law. That is not good news, in the sense that there are serious problems with EU IP law, exportation of EU law is not a good idea. EU IP law creates problems regarding access to knowledge and participation in culture, for remix artists, sequential innovation, and for software developers. Click here for more.
Safeguarding Public Health: South Africa’s Challenge to International Intellectual Property Laws
[Ayesha Jacub] Private profit versus public interest: the distinction may seem binary and simplistic but the divergence between big pharma and public health interests are increasing in polarity. Big pharma, like most big actors on the international trade scene have their interests firmly secured through lobbies touting big money, slanting legislation in their favour. With international trade legislation having direct effects on health issues in nation states, is the South African government doing enough to safeguard the health of its citizens? Click here for more.
USTR rejecting EU bids for more transparency in TTIP
[Sean Flynn] USTR demands for hyper-secrecy in the Trans Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) continue to be a major block to continuing negotiations. The current issue under discussion is access to US proposals by EU member states — which are of course themselves sovereign countries. The member states are demanding access to the text of proposals that would constrain their domestic law making, as they ave had in all other EU trade agreements (e.g. the recent EU-Canada FTA). But Inside US Trade (2/28/2014) reports that USTR Froman has offered only that “he might be able to allow the European Commission to share the U.S. negotiating documents it receives if they were accessible only in a secure reading room.” Click here for more.
“Really Open Education” – Reflections from Creative Commons Policy Debate
[Alek Tarkowski ] On the 18th of February, Creative Commons organized a debate on „Really Open Education. Domestic Policies for Open Educational Resources”, hosted by Róża Gräfin von Thun und Hohenstein, MEP. The meeting brought together almost 40 experts and stakeholders from a range of educational projects, national schooling systems, and national and international non-governmental organizations across Europe. Click here for more.
Industry Responds to White House Calls for Prior Art, Examiner Training
[Jorge Contreras] As previously reported, on February 20 the White House highlighted its progress on five patent-related policy initiatives introduced in June 2013, announced three new patent-related initiatives, and renewed its call for legislation to combat “patent trolling”. In all, ten different initiatives were discussed. Below is a quick guide to making sense of the most significant ones, as well as a summary of private sector responses to date. Click here for more.
See also: PIJIP table on Non-SDO Patent Commitments, with new statements from Intel, Microsoft, Yahoo & others. (Link)
Compulsory Patent Licensing and Local Drug Manufacturing Capacity in Africa
[Olasupo Ayodeji Owoeye] Africa has the highest disease burden in the world and continues to depend on pharmaceutical imports to meet public health needs. As Asian manufacturers of generic medicines begin to operate under a more protectionist intellectual property regime, their ability to manufacture medicines at prices that are affordable to poorer countries is becoming more circumscribed. Click here for more.
TRIPS Council: Discussion of IP And Innovation Irritates India: Other Issues Unchanged
[Catherine Saez] World Trade Organization members meeting at the WTO intellectual property committee this week held fast to positions on longstanding issues, but engaged in discussions on issues such as innovation in relation to universities, and so-called “non-violation complaints” against countries that may cause harm to another country but don’t violate a WTO rule. Also discussed was the ongoing dispute over plain packaging requirements for tobacco products. In a new issue, the introduction by the United States of the discussion on IP and innovation related to universities was criticized by India, echoing global tensions between the two nations. Click here for the full story on IP Watch.
Opening up data to accelerate research for neglected diseases and global health
[Belén Pedrique] Among the many worrisome facets of global health is the lack of adequate treatment, vaccination, and diagnostic tools for diseases predominantly afflicting the poor. Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs), drug-resistant tuberculosis and malaria, and other lesser-known infectious diseases debilitate or kill millions of people in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). However, because most of these patients are poor and marginalized, with little financial or political voice, research and development (R&D) for many of these diseases remains deficient. Click here for the full piece on the Lancet blog.