eliminate Rohingya Crisis

Future of mailbox patents

Future of mailbox patents

— Moeller IP

ALTHOUGH the World Trade Organisation agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights 1994 (TRIPS) came into force on January 1, 1995, members — developed, developing, and least developed countries — were initially given one year to implement the treaty obligations. Accordingly, developed countries implemented the agreement by January 1, 1996. However, developing and least developed countries were given a transition period of 10 years until January 1, 2006.

In addition, in LDCs where there is no existing patent regime, patent applications for pharmaceutical and agricultural chemical products are required to follow the mailbox since January 1, 1996 with exclusive marketing rights. This means that patent applications must be stored on offering exclusive marketing rights therein. At the end of the transition period, the applications have to be disposed of and the patents granted thereto have to be given the retrospective effect. In addition, no rollback will apply to countries with an existing patent regime, which means that countries with an existing patent regime will not be able to change their laws to stop issuing patents (Articles 70.8 and 70.9).

Subsequently, on June 27, 2002, the TRIPS Council relaxed further the LDCs’ obligations of patenting medicines till January 1, 2016 or until the countries graduate to the developing country status, whichever comes first, citing paragraph 7 of the Doha Declaration 2001. In addition, the decision of the WTO General Council dated July 8, 2002 waived the LDCs’ obligation to grant exclusive marketing rights to pharmaceutical products as described in Article 70.9 of the TRIPS until January 1, 2016. Further, on November 29, 2005 the TRIPS Council extended the LDCs’ general transition period for not complying with the TRIPS to July 1, 2013. So, it is clear from these decisions of the TRIPS and General Council that in LDCs where there is an existing patent regime for pharmaceuticals, the patenting thereof has to continue. Such countries will not be able to stop the issuance of drug patents by changing their laws. On the other hand, the LDCs that do not have an existing patent system for medicines will store applications and process them at the end of the interim period, giving the patents a retrospective validity. However, they do not have to provide exclusive marketing rights.

Although Bangladesh has an existing patent regime for pharmaceuticals, the country’s Department of Patents, Designs and Trademarks in a notice issued on January 7, 2008 suspended processing patent applications already filed and to be filed for pharmaceutical and agricultural chemical products until January 1, 2016 or such further date as may be extended and required them to be stored in the mailbox during the said period. It also asked for paying off new fees to process the stored applications in the future. As a result, these orders of the department appear to be in complete opposition to the decisions of the TRIPS Council and the WTO General Council for dealing with pharmaceutical patent applications.

Subsequently, on June 11, 2013, the TRIPS Council extended the LDCs’ general transition period to July 1, 2021. In addition, on November 6, 2015, the TRIPS Council in another decision exempted LDCs from implementing patents on pharmaceutical products and protection of undisclosed information until January 1, 2033. However, in the case of Bangladesh, this concession may not last long since it is graduating to the developing country in 2026.

Then, on November 30, 2015, the General Council called on the LDCs to remove the mailboxes with exclusive marketing rights for patent applications arising of pharmaceutical products. As a result, from November 30, 2015, the LDCs will now be able to roll back their laws. This means that an LDC can change its patent laws to stop the pharmaceutical patenting and the mailbox system therefrom with exclusive marketing rights. However, in the notification of the department, the rollback of the patent law has been done in Bangladesh from January 7, 2008. As a result, the patent application for pharmaceutical products has been stored in the mailbox since then instead of patenting them. Nevertheless, the mailbox applies only to countries that do not have an existing patent system.

Therefore, in compliance with the decisions of the TRIPS Council and the WTO General Council, it was the obligation of Bangladesh to continue the existing patent system till June 11, 2013 and not to accept patent applications for pharmaceutical products after the said date. Further, from November 30, 2015, all countries, including Bangladesh, were also supposed to give up the mailbox system with exclusive marketing rights.

In defiance, some unwary situations might arise that while patent applications for many pharmaceutical products have been under consideration since 2008, domestic pharmaceutical companies have been manufacturing generics of such products and supplying them at home and abroad. In the absence of the compulsory licensing issued by the government, it will then be seen that many generic drug companies are facing patent infringement lawsuits when the applications for the same are granted patents at the end of processing. The easiest way to get rid of this is to revoke the department’s 2008 notification with a retrospective effect as per the General Council’s decision of November 30, 2015 regarding the rollback.


Dr M Towhidul Islam is professor of law in the University of Dhaka.

Future of mailbox patents

More Story on Source:

* Source→ *




বাংলাদেশে ফেসবুকের বিকল্প আসছে তথ্য ও যোগাযোগ প্রযুক্তি প্রতিমন্ত্রী জুনাইদ আহমেদ পলক বলেছেন, ‘দেশকে আত্মনির্ভরশীল করার লক্ষ্যে আইসিটি বিভাগের উদ্যোগে
আমরা একটি স্থিতিশীল রাষ্ট্র ও স্থিতিশীল বিশ্বের কল্পনায় বিভোর ছিলাম ! আমরা একটি স্থিতিশীল রাষ্ট্র ও স্থিতিশীল বিশ্বের কল্পনায় বিভোর
अगर छुट्टी पर हैं तो संभलकर करें फेसबुक अपडेट {"_id":"420462d7e09468e07611cfb9fd61807d","slug":"be-careful-to-update-facebook-on-leave","type":"story","status":"publish","title_hn":"u0905u0917u0930 u091bu0941u091fu094du091fu0940 u092au0930 u0939u0948u0902 u0924u094b u0938u0902u092du0932u0915u0930 u0915u0930u0947u0902 u092bu0947u0938u092cu0941u0915 u0905u092au0921u0947u091f","category":{"title":"India News Archives","title_hn":"u0907u0902u0921u093fu092fu093e
میهن بلاگ - ابزار قدرتمند وبلاگ نویسی کاربران و همراهان سایت میهن بلاگ، سلام از اینکه مجبور هستیم از شما
Zuckerberge is Jealous ! China - TikTok ! Watch this . . .
Zionist Political Violence: Patterns and Motives This attempt to tackle the issue of Zionist political violence will not constitute a
Zionism Contents What is Zionism? Theodor Herzl The Balfour Declaration Zionism and World War II Jewish Resettlement in Israel The
Zidane to leave Real Madrid at end of season: reports Zidane to leave Real Madrid at end of season: reports
YouTube Enhances Hatred of Israel and Extinguishes Hate for Palestinians Photo Credit: YouTube YouTube account suspension{Originally posted to the FirstOne
YouTube Challenge Eater Kicked Out of Colorado Restaurant, Accused of Being a 'Scammer' Raina Huang, a YouTuber famous for traveling

→ all Story at a.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *