Declaration on Patent Protection: Regulatory Sovereignty under TRIPS

The Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition, together with a number of international patent scholars, has been working on a Patent Declaration showing the policy space in TRIPS. The official title is “Declaration on Patent Protection: Regulatory Sovereignty under TRIPS”. You will find the Declaration here.

The Patent Declaration supplements Max Planck Institute’s existing work on issues of international Intellectual Property law, such as the Declaration on a “Balanced Interpretation of the Three-Step Test in Copyright Law” (may be viewed here), which deals with limitations and exceptions to copyright protection, and the “Principles for Intellectual Property Provisions in Bilateral and Regional Agreements” (may be viewed here).

The Declaration attempts to address the four key issues related to the implementation and administration of patent systems of Sovereign states within the boundaries of international law.

The first of these issues is due to the unprecedented numbers of patent filings and grants in the history of the patent system creating backlogs and adversely affecting the welfare of every party involved in the process. The second being the emerging technologies and business practices that challenge the conventional practices of patent protection creating hiccups in the functioning of the patent system as a regulatory institution.

Third of the key concerns is the amorphous nature of the definition of a patent, i.e., the right to exclude is quickly changing into a commercial competitive tool. The fourth is the imbalance created in developed economies and advanced technological infrastructures with the shift of the patent regime getting more on the side of patent holders or applicants than originally intended.

These and several other prevalent issues in the global patent system are touched upon. We encourage our readers to sign the Declaration in support of the same.

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