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WTO members to extend LDCs' TRIPS transition period till Jul 1, 2034

Jul '21
Pic: WTO
Pic: WTO
Members of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) reached a consensus on the 13-year extension of the current transition period for least developed nations (LDCs) that was set to expire on July 1 this year at a formal meeting of the TRIPS Council on June 29. The transition period for LDC members under had been extended twice before—in 2005 and in 2013.

Since the inception of the TRIPS Agreement, LDCs have benefitted from an extended transition period to apply provisions of the agreement in recognition of their special requirements, their economic, financial and administrative constraints, and their need for flexibility to create a viable technological base.

The decision adopted was the result of intensive consultations over several months, a press release from WTO said.

Members were broadly in agreement on the principle of the extension but were unable to reach a decision due to their differences on the additional request that members graduating from LDC status should be accorded additional flexibilities under the TRIPS Agreement after their graduation.

LDCs favoured extending the transition period for as long as the member remains categorised as an LDC, and for an additional period of 12 years from the date of graduation of a member from the LDC category.

“This important decision proves that finding consensus is still within reach for members of this organization,” said the chair of the TRIPS Council, ambassador Dagfinn Sorli of Norway.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)

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