The incorporation of intellectual property protection into the WTO international trading system has been a milestone in international economic law and has added a new dimension to trade regulation -- new rights and obligations and new challenges alike. The contributors, leading scholars and practitioners in the field, provide insights into the legal relationship of the TRIPs Agreement to the GATT 94 and the GATS. The book widens the debate with a thorough discussion on pending and unresolved relations of TRIPs, the WTO, UPOV, the Convention on Biodiversity and Farmers' Rights contained in the FAO International Undertaking, and efforts of the World Bank GCIAR system, including IPGRI. What will be the impact of TRIPs on ownership of plant genetic resources?
Largely a victory for OECD countries, the present state of intellectual property rights has important implications for developing countries. The incorporation of intellectual property rights into the WTO system will eventually change the relationship of trade, competition, and intellectual property. It will equally have to assist in providing equitable sharing of benefits in the use of plant genetic resources. All of these issues are essential for the revision of exclusions from patenting in TRIPs. This volume offers insights into how this difficult task could and should be approached in a balanced manner and will be essential reading for economists and trade and intellectual property lawyers interested in the subject. Moreover, the volume will be relevant to agricultural economists as it addresses complex problems in the interstices of trade, intellectual property, plant genetic resources, and sustainable development.
Thomas Cottier is Professor of European and International Economic Law, University of Bern, and Managing Director, World Trade Institute, University of Bern.
Petros C. Mavroidis is Professor of Law, University of Neuch tel. He formerly worked in the Legal Affairs Division of the World Trade Organization.
Marion Panizzon is Research Fellow, University of Bern.
Simon Lacey is Research Fellow, University of Bern.