Areas where USTR has shown some flexibility on the TPP IPR Chapter

USTR recently asked KEI if there were areas in the IP Chapter where we approved of the positions taken by USTR, and the answer is, yes. Given how critical we have been about the text, I will mention a few here.

USTR now “supports a more flexible approach under which partners could retain reasonable patent pre-grant opposition procedures.” This is welcome, and useful.

USTR tells us they are not opposed to exceptions to exclusive rights in test data. We think the language is not clear (at all) on that issue, but this suggests something may possibility be worked out that will be important for access to medicines. (Exclusive rights without exceptions for medicines are a really bad idea.)

We have heard, but not confirmed, that USTR has recently become more flexible on parallel trade, which make some sense given the state of US law on this topic.

While the language seems open to a contrary intepretation, USTR says it supports the full TRIPS flexibilities on injunctions in Article 44 of the TRIPS. This is quite important, but needs to be clearer in the text.

USTR is not opposing language on copyright exceptions for copyright.

I’ll try to add some more items, and of course, would love to see this list grow.