Opening Statement by India at the 28th session of the Standing Committee on the Law of Patents delivered by Shri Animesh Choudhury, Second Secretary at the World Intellectual Property Organisation, Geneva on 09th July 2018

Opening Statement by India at the 28th session of the Standing Committee on the Law of Patents delivered by Shri Animesh Choudhury, Second Secretary at the World Intellectual Property Organisation, Geneva on 09 th July 2018.

Thank You Mr. Chair,

At the outset, India would like to align itself with the statement delivered by Indonesia on behalf of the Asia Pacific Group.

Mr. Chair,

2. India strongly believes that WIPO being the principal norm setting body in the field of intellectual property in the world has an enormous responsibility in ensuring a fine balance between innovation and socio-economic developmental priorities. The significant flexibilities provided by the TRIPS agreement in the design of domestic patent laws are critical. They allow policymakers in developing countries and LDCs to ensure domestic patent laws are in line with their socio-economic development realities.

3. India is strongly against any attempts aimed at harmonization of patent law, which are neither desirable nor acceptable.

Mr. Chair,

4. India is of the view that ensuring quality of patents is the most essential element of the patenting process. Any substandard patent has an enormous social cost which has serious implications for developing countries and LDCs. In this context, both the patent examination process and opposition systems have a vital role to play. It is high time; this committee devotes equal attention to the role of opposition systems as discussions on this subject have remained dormant for a significant period. In our view, a well defined opposition system adds value to the process of the patent examinations thereby serving as a deterrent and ensuring quality in patent claims.

Mr. Chair,

5. India appreciates that this committee has scheduled to discuss the important agenda of patents and health in significant detail. Here India would like to highlight the well-meaning report of the UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel on Access to Medicines. The recommendations of the UNHLP can be a good basis to develop concrete proposals under this agenda item in the SCP. The UNHLP makes an extremely pertinent recommendation, that countries should make full use of the policy space under Article 27 of the TRIPS Agreement to avoid ever greening of patents keeping in mind their public health priorities. In this context, India welcomes discussions on the proposal by Brazil, Canada and Switzerland for a review of existing research on patents and access to medical technologies.

Mr. Chair,

6. India believes that this Committee also needs to make headway on the subject of transfer of technology and its relationship to the patent system. In our view there is a lot of scope for progress in this area and we need to graduate from preliminary studies towards tangible progress on this subject.

7. On the subject of confidentiality of communications between Clients and their patent advisors, India believes this is not a substantive patent law issue and can be dealt under the law of evidence.

Mr. Chair,

8. India looks forward to the sharing sessions and information exchange sessions on the various agenda items, namely, Quality of Patents including Opposition Systems, Patents and Health, Confidentiality of communications between Clients and their Patent Advisors and transfer of technology. Our delegation will make specific interventions on the various agenda items as and when they come up for discussion.

9. India is committed to participate in a constructive manner in the deliberations of this committee.

Thank You.

 
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