ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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COVID-19 Vaccines

The Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 and National Disaster Management Act, 2005 grant the Government of India a great deal of autonomy and control in declaring an infectious disease as a pandemic and in suspending citizen’s rights. Three distinct but related legal issues regarding the government’s handling of intellectual property rights under the Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Agreement of the World Trade Organization, consumer rights, and product liability for the COVID-19 vaccines are discussed, as the raging pandemic has created uncertainties in the implementation of these laws.

Intellectual Property Rights and Food: Is the TRIPS Agreement in India’s Favour?

Protecting the right of innovators and adhering to the universal right to food security is a delicate dance that India must seriously reflect on if it is to sustain any meaningful position in the international trading arena.

Natco-Bayer Verdict

Bayer has lost its case challenging the grant of India's first-ever compulsory licence to Natco Pharma to manufacture an affordable generic version of an anti-cancer drug, but the celebratory air has to be tempered. The issue of what constitutes "local working" of a patent in India remains, in general, unsettled. This article looks at the legality of local working requirements under the Agreement on Trade-related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights. It also analyses the interpretations of "working" by the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks, the Intellectual Property Appellate Board, and the Bombay High Court, and considers their broader implications.

WTO and South Asia

WTO negotiations so far have shown that when countries forge alliances they can generate synergies and become powerful players. The EU, Cairns Group and the African bloc have emerged as influential groups within the WTO. Several factors have stalled the evolution of a common position among south Asian countries: regional politics and antipathies, the economic disparity in the region, and the temptation for individual countries to draw up independent arrangements with developed countries in return for trade favours often detrimental to regional interests. Will south Asian countries function with a common agenda at Cancun?

WTO: Heavy Baggage for Cancun

The two-year long, hard-fought negotiations among officials of 146 countries at the WTO's headquarters in Geneva have left all the core areas of the Doha Development Agenda, with the exception of TRIPS and Public Health, still far from agreement. So it is over to the ministerial meeting in Cancun next week, which will be judged by the final outcome in agriculture, non-agriculture market access and the four 'Singapore issues'.

Indian Pharmaceutical Industry in WTO Regime

A SWOT analysis of the Indian pharmaceutical industry (IPI) in the WTO regime reveals that the much acclaimed IPI's expertise in process development skills were made possible by amendments made to the Indian Patents Act 1970. This strength should be utilised to the hilt to benefit from opportunities that arise from vertical disintegration of research, clinical trials and manufacturing by the multinationals. IPI faces threats in the form of competition from other Asian giants, particularly China. This paper argues that the IPI should adopt various strategies like producing off-patented products, new patented products by acquiring compulsory licensing or cross licensing, collaborate with multinationals not only in R and D and manufacturing, but also in marketing new patented products and improving the standards of production to widen the export market.

TRIPS Agreement and Amendment of Patents Act in India

This article examines whether the amendment to the Indian Patents Act, 1970 has taken advantage of the provisions available under the TRIPS agreement, and look at the exemption, exception and compulsory licensing provisions in pharmaceuticals.

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