TRIPS — Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights
The WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) is the most comprehensive multilateral agreement on intellectual property (IP). It plays a central role in facilitating trade in knowledge and creativity, in resolving trade disputes over IP, and in assuring WTO members the latitude to achieve their domestic policy objectives. It frames the IP system in terms of innovation, technology transfer and public welfare. The Agreement is a legal recognition of the significance of links between IP and trade and the need for a balanced IP system.
- COVID-19: Measures regarding trade-related intellectual property rights
- An integrated health, trade and IP approach to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic
- Information Note: The TRIPS Agreement and COVID-19
- Information Note: How WTO members have used trade measures to expedite access to COVID-19 critical medical goods and services
- Information Note: Developing and delivering COVID-19 vaccines around the world
Staff working papers
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- What are intellectual property rights?
- Basic introduction to the TRIPS Agreement
- Guide to the TRIPS Agreement
- The economics of TRIPS
- Frequently asked questions on TRIPS
- Biotechnology, biodiversity and traditional knowledge
- Climate change
- Geographical indications
- Innovation policy
- Least developed countries (LDCs)
- Non-violation complaints
- Public health
- Public interest
- Technology transfer
The TRIPS Council is responsible for administering and monitoring the operation of the TRIPS Agreement. In its regular meetings, the TRIPS Council serves as a forum for discussion between members on key issues.
In its special sessions, the TRIPS Council serves as a forum for negotiations on a multilateral system of notification and registration of geographical indications (GIs) for wines and spirits.back to top
Transparency mechanisms help the TRIPS Council to monitor the operation of the TRIPS Agreement and promote the understanding of members’ intellectual property policies and legal systems. These mechanisms include WTO members' notifications, responses to checklists of questions, reviews of implementing legislation, reports on technical assistance and technology transfer, and contact points.
The Guide to Transparency under TRIPS provides further details about these mechanisms and how members can provide and access the materials.
Access notifications, responses to checklists, and reports submitted by members and observers through the e-TRIPS Gateway.
Members and observers may submit notifications, checklist responses, and reports online via the e-TRIPS Submission System (restricted access).
The main objective of the WTO's technical assistance activities is to help members and observers implement an intellectual property regime that meets their developmental and other domestic policy objectives. The activities take a holistic approach, recognizing that policy choices within the TRIPS framework are integral to a broader policy context.
The WTO Secretariat cooperates with WIPO, WHO, and many other intergovernmental and regional organizations on matters of common interest. This cooperation includes participating as an observer in other organizations’ meetings, collaborating on technical assistance, and consulting on other topics upon request.
- 12 February 2021: TRIPS@25 - Webinar on Patents, Biotechnology and Biodiversity
- 24 November 2020: TRIPS@25 webinar – Virtual Symposium: Celebrating 25 years of the TRIPS Agreement
- 21 October 2020: WTO workshop on health, trade and IP: an integrated approach to COVID-19
Regular meetings of the TRIPS Council
Special sessions of the TRIPS Council
Recent publications on intellectual property
A Handbook on the WTO TRIPS Agreement : Second edition
Promoting Access to Medical Technologies and Innovation: Intersections between public health, intellectual property and trade (second edition)
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