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CIEL participates in the WIPO Development Agenda Discussions held in Geneva June 26-30, 2006

The WIPO Provisional Committee on Proposals Related to a WIPO Development Agenda (PCDA) held its second session in Geneva from June 26 to 30, 2006. The meeting provided WIPO member states with the opportunity to communicate their support for the proposals incorporated under six clusters listed in Annex 1 of document PCDA 1/6/ Prov.21, and to formulate recommendations to be considered by the WIPO General Assembly. Established in 2005 to carry forward the process of the Development Agenda in WIPO, the PCDA is mandated to come up with recommendations for the General Assembly meeting scheduled in September 2006.

While most members remain committed to the process of mainstreaming development concerns into WIPO, differences between them continued to exist. For example, the first part of the Day 1 meeting was dedicated to informal consultations on procedural matters between the Chairman of the PCDA, Ambassador Rigoberto Gauto Vielman of Paraguay, and regional coordinators. These informal consultations aimed at reaching some form of consensus on the work programme for the week, as some members were reported to have disapproved of the chair's proposal to adopt a "basket approach" to the proposals, i.e., categorizing all the proposals into those that are likely to achieve immediate consensus, those that members might agree upon, and those where consensus could not be reached.2

WIPO Document PCDA 1/6/ Prov.2 constituted the basis of the discussions with members agreeing to discuss each cluster "as broadly and flexible as possible." In addition, the Friends of Development (FOD) submitted a document, PCDA/2/2 entitled "Proposal on the Decision of the PCDA on the establishment of a WIPO Development Agenda," which they hoped would form the basis of discussions and would be adopted as recommendations to the upcoming General Assembly. In its introductory remarks, the FOD highlighted that the proposed recommendations constituted a synthesis of proposals of some WIPO members in an attempt to be all-inclusive. It incorporated, for instance, proposals from the Africa Group, Bahrain and a group of countries, and the US. The FOD document proposes, among other things, that the PCDA recommends that the WIPO General Assembly:

  • Initiates a process for the adoption of a high-level declaration on intellectual property and development;
  • Adopts principles on technical assistance that are development-oriented, with programmes that are mutually supportive of and coherent with relevant international instruments and national development policies and having an integrated approach; and
  • Adopt guidelines and principles on WIPO norm-setting activities that are member-driven and transparent and that take into consideration the different levels of economic, social, and technological development of each member state.

While the FOD document received support from several developing countries, a majority of developed countries did not support such a document as forming the basis of the discussions.

After a week of discussions, informally and at the plenary session, the meeting ended in deadlock with members unable to agree on the method to adopt for the recommendations to the General Assembly. At the close of the meeting, it was agreed that a factual report of the meeting would be prepared and forwarded together with all the proposals to the General Assembly meeting.

For more information on the WIPO Development Agenda and documentation, see:

1. The clusters include: (A) technical assistance and capacity building; (B) norm-setting, flexibilities, public policy and public domain; (C) technology transfer, ICT and access to knowledge; (D) assessments, evaluation and impact studies; (E) institutional matters including mandate and governance; and (F) other issues. See PCDA 1/6/ Prov.2.
2. See

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