India says WIPO treaty a significant win for Global South | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

India says WIPO treaty a significant win for Global South

ByRajeev Jayaswal
May 26, 2024 08:10 PM IST

A historic treaty relating to genetic resources and traditional knowledge associated with it was concluded at the WIPO headquarters in Geneva on Friday

The World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) treaty is a “significant win” for India and the Global South as it will help in protecting traditional knowledge of these countries, a commerce and industry ministry statement said.

The agreement could be reached after a two-week long deliberation involving 192 countries and 86 observers who participated from May 13-24 at the diplomatic conference in Geneva. (AFP)
The agreement could be reached after a two-week long deliberation involving 192 countries and 86 observers who participated from May 13-24 at the diplomatic conference in Geneva. (AFP)

On Friday, after 25 years of discussions and negotiations, a historic treaty relating to genetic resources and traditional knowledge associated with the genetic resources was concluded at the WIPO headquarters in Geneva, a ministry spokesperson said. The pact provides additional safeguard to India’s genetic resources and traditional knowledge and protects them from misappropriation by developed countries and multinational firms, he said.

Now catch your favourite game on Crickit. Anytime Anywhere. Find out how

The agreement could be reached after a two-week long deliberation involving 192 countries and 86 observers who participated from May 13-24 at the diplomatic conference, he said.

The WIPO treaty on intellectual property, genetic resources (GRs) and associated traditional knowledge (ATK), is a significant win for countries of the Global South and for India, which is a mega biodiversity hotspot with abundance of traditional knowledge, and wisdom, the ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

For the first time the system of knowledge and wisdom which have supported economies, societies and cultures for centuries is now inscribed into the global IP system. For the first time the connection between local communities and their GRs and ATK is recognised in the global IP community, it said. “These are historic achievements long championed by India as a provider of traditional knowledge and wisdom and repository of biodiversity,” it added.

“The treaty will not only safeguard and protect biodiversity but will increase transparency in the patent system and strengthen innovation. Through this, the IP system can continue to incentivize innovation while evolving in a more inclusive way, responding to the needs of all countries and their communities,” it added.

The treaty also marks a big win for India and the Global South which has for long been a proponent of this instrument. After two decades of negotiations and with collective support this treaty has been adopted at the multilateral fora, with a consensus among more than 150 countries, it said.

With the majority of the developed countries on board, who generate IP and use these resources and knowledge for research and innovation, this treaty paves the way for bridging conflicting paradigms within the IP system and the protection of biodiversity which have existed for decades, it said.

The treaty on ratification and entry into force will require contracting parties to put in place, mandatory disclosure obligations for patent applicants to disclose the country of origin or source of the genetic resources when the claimed invention is based on genetic resources or associated traditional knowledge. This will offer added protection to Indian GRs and TK, which while currently protected in India are prone to misappropriation in countries which do not have disclosure of obligations, it said.

“Therefore, by creating global standards on disclosure of origin obligations, this treaty creates an unprecedented framework within the IP system for provider countries of Genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge,” it added.

At present, only 35 countries have some form of disclosure obligations, most of which are not mandatory and do not have appropriate sanctions or remedies in place for effective implementation. This treaty will require contracting parties, including the developed world, to bring changes in their existing legal framework for enforcing disclosure of origin obligations on patent applicants, it said.

The treaty marks the start of the journey to achieve collective growth and deliver the promise of a sustainable future, a cause which India has championed for centuries.

Get World Cup ready with Crickit! From live scores to match stats, catch all the action here. Explore now!

See more

Get Current Updates on India News, Budget 2024, Weather Today along with Latest News and Top Headlines from India and around the world.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Tuesday, June 18, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On