India and the US reopens the IPR Pandora box

India and the US- the fast emerging friends on several fronts continue to differ on IPR issues. In the bilateral Trade Policy Forum meeting held at New Delhi, representatives of the two countries both countries opened new areas of conflicts within the IPR front.

 Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman firmed the stand of limiting IPR within WTO’s TRIPs agreement.   She highlighted the UN High level panel report on access to medicines.

“I pointed out to the USTR that a report brought out by a UN high level panel on access to medicines clearly vindicates India’s position on TRIPS plus issues such as data exclusivity and patent linkages,”- the Commerce Minister indicated India’s stand on IPR in the context of affordable medicine issue.

India and the US have made a big battle on the IPR front and India is a priority watch country under the US intellectual property system. Priority watch countries are those have serious differences with the US.

In the meeting, the US Trade Representative urged India to form new laws and policies on IPR front. US also raised concern over New Delhi’s initiatives to renegotiate on some of the existing agreements.

India’s 2005 Patent Amendment gives powers to the government to issue compulsory licenses and gives a review of Patent applications if the applied patents don’t have substantial inventiveness.

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