Trade & investment

ICC panel sets out to reduce IP divide

  • 21 June 2005

A move to reassure developing countries about the benefits of protecting intellectual property will take place on 21 June during the Inter-sessional Intergovernmental Meeting on a Development Agenda for the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).

Organized by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the panel will highlight just some of the positive ways in which innovators, creators and entrepreneurs in developing countries are utilizing today’s IP system to their advantage. Case studies will illustrate how intellectual property has been used in countries such as Ethiopia, Brazil and Ghana. Speakers will include represent atives from industries in Brazil, India, Argentina and Egypt.

The current WIPO debate on the needs of developing countries is causing division among its 182 member countries. A number of developing countries feel that today’s intellectual property system, and particularly the patent system, does not strike the right balance between the interests of developed and developing countries.

This division has led to the WIPO negotiations on a Substantive Patent Law Treaty being stalled and discussions on possible changes to WIPO’s structure and mandate could ultimately be prejudicial to IP owners. The ICC-hosted panel will look constructively at ways in which WIPO and governments can help local communities in developing nations gain benefit from the IP system.

The panel will be moderated by Peter Siemsen, of Dannemann, Siemsen, Bigler & Ipanema Moreira, and Vice Chair of the ICC Commission on Intellectual Property.

Earlier this year, ICC launched the sixth edition of its roadmap charting current and emerging IP issues, prepared by the ICC Commission on Intellectual Property.