The World Trade Organization TRIPS

The World Trade Organization TRIPS

The World Trade Organization TRIPS
The World Trade Organization (WTO) is an international organization designed to supervise, and facilitate international trade by establishing rules of trade between nations. The World Trade Organization emerged in 1994 when the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) dissolved. Many of the original ideas behind GATT, which were established in 1947 are still present within WTO structure, though much of the regulations have been modified since 1994. 
International trade regulation became a central focus with the conclusion of World War II, as a renewed interest in international economic cooperation was sparked. Along with GATT, the International Trade Organization (ITO) was also successfully negotiated, focusing on the issues about trade barriers, along with employment, restrictive business practices and commodity agreements.
The ITO, however, was not approved by the United States, and GATT became the de facto international trade organization until 1994, before being adopted into the newly established WTO. The WTO currently has 148 Member countries adhering to the specific eighteen agreements set forth by the organization. One of those agreements is the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).
Basis of TRIPS:

TRIPS (Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights) is one of the international agreements given by the WTO that puts into effect several required standards pertaining to intellectual property rights. This includes rules for copyrights, geographical indications, industrial designs, patents, new plant varieties, and trademarks. Negotiated during the conclusion of the Uruguay Round of GATT in 1994, TRIPS also covered standards for intellectual property enforcement codes and resolution processes. 
It was created to adhere to the protection and enforcement of three fundamental purposes of intellectual property laws-- (1) intellectual property rights facilitate the spread of ideas and innovation, (2) inventors of such technology should be given an advantage over the use of their work, (3) and rights and obligations in intellectual property law should be balanced and fair.
Impact on International Intellectual Property and Patent Law:
TRIPS became the first international treaty to merge intellectual property laws into an international trading system. TRIPS became a major draw to many nations, including Russia and China for reasons in which the Berne Convention failed to provide. The intellectual property rules set forth by the agreement were strictly enforced, and unlike other agreements pertaining to intellectual property and patent law, States that violated the rules of TRIPS were subject to the WTO dispute settlement program.
TRIPS has been met with criticism since its inception, the majority of the complaints originating from developing countries, academics and non-governmental organizations. These arguments are aimed at the WTO as a whole, but also specifically at TRIPS. 
The major concern about TRIPS is its tendency to redistribute wealth from people in developing countries to patent holders in developed countries. Another major criticism is the implementation of artificial scarcity in countries that would normally have less strict intellectual property and patent laws.




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