TRIPS Enforcement and Developing Countries
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In January 2009, the WTO Dispute Settlement Body released a panel report on China - Measures Affecting the Protection and Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights. The dispute concerned the inadequacy of protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights in China under the TRIPS Agreement. While both China and the United States were quick to declare victory in this dispute, less developed countries might have become the dispute’s unintended and unannounced winner. As part of the symposium on the Anti-counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) and international intellectual property enforcement, this Article focuses on the implications of this panel report for less developed countries. It begins by recapitulating the key arguments made by China and the United States as well as the major findings in the report. The article then evaluates the panel report from the standpoint of less developed countries. It explores both the areas where the report has enabled less developed countries to score some important points in the interpretation of the TRIPS Agreement and where it has provided some disappointments.
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