Article 2.1 Trips Agreement

(a) arising from international agreements on mutual legal assistance or application of a general nature which are not particularly limited to the protection of intellectual property; The Agreement on trade aspects of intellectual property rights (TRIPS) is an international agreement between all member states of the World Trade Organization (WTO). It establishes minimum standards for the regulation of different forms of intellectual property (IP) by national governments, as applied to nationals of other WTO member countries. [3] TRIPS was negotiated at the end of the Uruguay Round of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) between 1989 and 1990[4] and is managed by the WTO. Article 40 of the TRIPS Agreement provides that certain practices or conditions relating to intellectual property rights that restrict competition may have negative effects on trade and impede the transfer and dissemination of technology (paragraph 1). In accordance with the other provisions of the Agreement, Member States may take appropriate measures to prevent or control abusive and anti-competitive IPR licensing practices (paragraph 2). The Agreement provides for a mechanism where by which a country wishing to object to such practices involving companies of another Member State enters into consultations with that other Member and provides non-confidential information publicly available and relevant to the matter in question, as well as other information at its disposal, subject to the provisions of national law and the conclusion of agreements to safeguard its confidentiality by the requesting Member (para. aphe 3). Similarly, a country whose companies are subject to such measures in another Member State may enter into consultations with that Member (paragraph 4). Unlike other intellectual property agreements, TRIPS has an effective enforcement mechanism. States can be disciplined by the WTO dispute settlement mechanism. The obligations under Articles 3 and 4 shall not apply to procedures under multilateral agreements concluded under the auspices of WIPO on the acquisition or maintenance of intellectual property rights.