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Title: The TRIPS Article 23 Extension Stalemate Continues: A Way-Ahead for the Developing Countries
Authors: Rai, Rajnish Kumar
Keywords: GI
TRIPS Agreement
free riding
Issue Date: Sep-2009
Publisher: CSIR
Abstract: The GI-extension debate has brought conspicuous public attention on the unusual characteristic of the TRIPS Agreement. Unlike other classes of intellectual property, the TRIPS Agreement provides a pecking order in the levels of protection for a single definition of subject matter. While most of the Members admit that the pecking order in the levels of protection has neither logical nor legal basis, they continue to vehemently defend their positions on GI-extension. Though the debate over extension of Article 23 started out largely as a North-North issue, the current debate is an interesting amalgamation of North-North conflict and North-South split. This paper examines the provisions of TRIPS Agreement regarding GIs and utilizes the submissions made to the TRIPS Councils to critically analyse the issue of Article 23 extension in the background of North-South face-off. This article also evaluates the possibility of higher protection in addressing distinctive circumstances confronted by the developing countries. This paper concludes that in view of the diverging interests among Members, the current TRIPS Agreement provisions regarding protection of GIs should be maintained as the minimum standard to achieve an acceptable agreement, and the question of GI-extension should be decided after examining the issue on two counts - the allowances that would required to be conceded elsewhere in exchange for agreement on GI-extension, and the liabilities linked with protecting GIs of other Members
Page(s): 405-422
ISSN: 0975-1076 (Online); 0971-7544 (Print)
Source:JIPR Vol.14(5) [September 2009]

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