General Studies IIIIntellectual Property Rights

WIPO- World Intellectual Property Organization

About World intellectual property organization:

  • The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is one of the 15 specialized agencies of the United Nations (UN).
  • Formation: 14th July 1967.
  • Convention Establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization, WIPO was created to promote and protect intellectual property (IP) across the world by cooperating with countries as well as international organizations.
  • It began operations on 26 April 1970 when the convention entered into force
  • Headquarter: Geneva, Switzerland
  • WIPO’s activities include hosting forums to discuss and shape international IP rules and policies, providing global services that register and protect IP in different countries, resolving transboundary IP disputes, helping connect IP systems through uniform standards and infrastructure, and serving as a general reference database on all IP matters; this includes providing reports and statistics on the state of IP protection or innovation both globally and in specific countries.
  • WIPO also works with governments, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and individuals to utilize IP for socioeconomic development.
  • WIPO currently has 193 member states, including 190 UN member states and the Cook Islands, Holy See and Niue; Palestine has permanent observer status. The only non-members are the Federated States of Micronesia, Palau and South Sudan.
  • India joined WIPO in 1975.

Timeline of WIPO

  • 1883 — Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial property
    • First step taken to protect intellectual work in other countries. It covers:
      • Inventions(patents),
      • Trademarks,
      • Industrial Designs.
  • 1886 — Berne Convention
    • For the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works. It covers:
      • Novels, short stories, poems, plays;
      • Songs, opera, musicals;
      • Drawings, paintings, sculptures, architectural works.
  • 1891 — Madrid Agreement
    • The first international IP filing service is launched.
  • 1893 — BIRPI established
    • Two secretariats set up to administer the Paris and Berne Conventions combine to form the United International Bureaux for the Protection of Intellectual Property (BIRPI).

  • 1970 — BIRPI becomes WIPO
    • WIPO becomes a member state-led intergovernmental organization.
  • 1974 — WIPO joins the United Nations
    • WIPO become one of the agencies of UN.
  • 1978 — Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) system launched
    • By filing one international patent application under the PCT, applicants can simultaneously seek protection for an invention in a very large number of countries.

  • 1994 — Arbitration and Mediation Centre (AMC) established
    • The Centre offers alternative dispute resolution services to help solve international commercial disputes between private parties.

WIPO’s Mandate

‘WIPO is dedicated to developing a balanced and accessible international Intellectual Property (IP) system, which rewards creativity, stimulates innovation and contributes to economic development while safeguarding the public interest.’

Functions of WIPO 

The World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) was established with the intent to perform the following functions:

  • To assist the development of campaigns that improve IP Protection all over the globe and keep the national legislations in harmony.
  • Signing international agreements related to Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) protection.
  • To implement administrative functions discussed by the Berne and Paris Unions.
  • To render legal and technical assistance in the field of IP.
  • To conduct research and publish its results as well as to collect and circulate information.
  • To ensure the work of services that facilitate the International Intellectual Property Protection.
  • To implement other appropriate and necessary actions.

World Intellectual Property Indicators 2019:

  • World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has released the World Intellectual Property Indicators 2019.
  • In 2018, patent filings around the world exceeded by around 3 million, representing a 5.2% growth over 2017 figures.
  • The global growth in IP filings was driven by China which accounted for over 50% of IP filings including patents, trademarks and design.
  • The US was ranked second as it witnessed a 1.6% fall in patent filings, which is the first decline for the country in the previous decade.
  • India was among the top ten countries of the total (resident and abroad) Intellectual Property (IP) filing activity by origin.
  • India saw over 20% growth in trademark filing whereas in respect of industrial design filing activity, it witnessed a 13.6% rise.

Treaties of WIPO:

WIPO Performance and Phonograms TreatyDeals with the rights of two kinds of beneficiaries, particularly in the digital environment: §  Performers (actors, singers, musicians, etc.); and §  Producers of phonograms (persons or legal entities that take the initiative and have the responsibility for the fixation of sounds).India has acceded to this agreement.
Budapest TreatyInternational Recognition of the Deposit of Microorganisms for the Purposes of Patent Procedure.India has acceded to the treaty.
Madrid Protocol for the International Registration of MarksProvides for the international registration of trade marks by way of one application that can cover more than one country.India has acceded to the protocol.
Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works by Visually Impaired Persons and Persons with Print DisabilitiesThe treaty allows for copyright exceptions to facilitate the creation of accessible versions of books and other copyrighted works for visually impaired persons.India has ratified the treaty.
WIPO Copyright TreatyA special agreement under the Berne Convention which deals with the protection of works and the rights of their authors in the digital environment.India has acceded to the treaty.

WIPO and India

India joined the WIPO in 1975.

India is a part of the following WIPO Treaties:

  • IPO Convention (1975)
  • Paris Convention (1998)
  • Berne Convention (1928)
  • Patent Cooperation Treaty (1998)
  • Phonograms Convention (1975)
  • Nairobi Treaty (1983)
  • Nice Agreement (2019)
  • Locarno Agreement (2019)
  • Vienna Agreement (2019)

India acceded to all of the above treaties. India was the first country to ratify the Marrakesh Treaty.

India has jumped places in the Global Innovation Index (GII) in recent years. In the 2019 GII, India is ranked 52nd, which is a big leap from previous years.

  • Since 2011, India is the top-ranked innovative country in the Southern and Central Asia region.
  • India has been outperforming on innovation relative to its GDP per capita for eight years at a stretch.
  • On innovation quality, India ranks second among middle-income economies globally.
  • The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) is a GII Knowledge Partner since 2009.
  • In India, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry deals with WIPO and related issues

WIPO Publications

The Global Innovation Index (GII) is a global ranking for countries for success in and capacity for innovation.

  • It is published by the WIPO in association with Cornell University and graduate business school INSEAD.
  • The index ranks countries based on 80 indicators, ranging from intellectual property filing rates to Research and Development, online creativity, mobile application creation, computer software spending, education spending, scientific & technical publications and ease of starting a business.

India’s initiatives for IPR protection

WTO:India has been a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) since 1995. This requires member nations to establish Intellectual Property (IP) laws whose effect is in line with minimum standards.
Copyright:India is a signatory to the Berne Convention on copyright. Copyrights Act and Information Technology Act, 2000 (for copyright in electronics and digital field) govern the laws for copyright in India.
Patents:India’s Patents Act of 1970 and 2003 Patent Rules govern the law concerning patents. The regulatory authority for patents is the Patent Registrar within the department of the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks, which is part of India’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
Designs:Law on industrial designs are governed by Designs Act, 2000 under DIPP, Ministry of Commerce and industry.
Geographical Indications:The GIs are governed under Geographical Indications of Goods Act, 1999 under DIPP, Ministry of Commerce and industry.
Traditional Knowledge:Traditional Knowledge Digital Library has been created to safeguard and bring together traditional knowledge at one platform through collaboration – between the CSIR and the Department of Ayurveda, Yoga and Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha and Homeopathy (Dept. of AYUSH), Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Government of India.

India’s National Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Policy, 2016

“Creative India; Innovative India: रचनात्मक भारतअभिनव भारत

  • The National IPR Policy is a vision document that encompasses and brings to a single platform all IPRs. It views IPRs holistically, taking into account all inter-linkages and thus aims to create and exploit synergies between all forms of intellectual property (IP), concerned statutes and agencies. It sets in place an institutional mechanism for implementation, monitoring and review. It aims to incorporate and adapt global best practices to the Indian scenario.
  • Policy aims to push IPRs as a marketable financial asset, promote innovation and entrepreneurship, while protecting public interest.
  • The plan will be reviewed every five years in consultation with stakeholders.
  • To ensure strong and effective IPR laws, steps would be taken – including review of existing IP laws.
  • The policy is entirely compliant with the WTO’s agreement on TRIPS.
  • Special thrust on awareness generation and effective enforcement of IPRs, besides encouragement of IP commercialization through various incentives.
  • India will engage constructively in the negotiation of international treaties and agreements in consultation with stakeholders.
  • It suggests making the department of industrial policy and promotion (DIPP) the nodal agency for all IPR issues.
  • Copyrights related issues will also come under DIPP’s ambit from that of the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry.
  • Films, music, industrial drawings will be all covered by copyright.
  • The Policy also seeks to facilitate domestic IPR filings, for the entire value chain from IPR generation to commercialization. It aims to promote research and development through tax benefits.
  • The policy left the country’s patent laws intact and specifically did not open up Section 3(d) of the Patents Act, which sets the standard for what is considered an invention in India, for reinterpretation.

Source: WIPO

You can find many articles on Intellectual Property Rights (part of GS III) in our website. Go through these articles share with your friends and post your views in comment section.

World Trade Organization (WTO)

Geographical Indications (GI TAG)

The Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS)

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