The Doha Round texts — contents

These are the principal documents agreed by WTO member governments at important stages in the trade negotiations that were launched by the Doha Ministerial Conference in November 2001.

They are introduced here

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Doha Ministerial Conference 9–14 November 2001  

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Organization of work Geneva 2002  

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Doha Round texts after Doha  

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TRIPS and public health 2002, 2003  

  • TRIPS Council decision allowing least-developed countries until 2016 to protect pharmaceutical patents and test data decided 1 July 2002, IP/C/25
    (A few days after this was agreed in the TRIPS Council, the General Council reached a closely related decision on 8 July 2002 (WT/L/478), allowing least-developed countries until 2016 to grant exclusive marketing rights under Article 70.9 of the TRIPS Agreement. This deals with the situation where pharmaceutical patents are not protected, but a patent application has been submitted and the government has allowed the product to be marketed.)

  • General Council decision on compulsory licensing for export (“Implementation of paragraph 6 of the Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and public health”) decided 30 August 2003, WT/L/540 and Corr.1
    (The General Council has adopted two decisions on the “Paragraph 6” system — a reference to Paragraph 6 of the Doha Ministerial Declaration on TRIPS and Public Health. The decisions dealt with an obstacle for countries needing to import cheaper generics made under compulsory licensing when they were unable to manufacture the medicines themselves. Now, pharmaceutical products can be made under compulsory licence in one country, exclusively for exporting to another country which lacks its own production capacity, provided certain conditions are met.

    The first decision, adopted in 2003 just before the Cancún Ministerial Conference, is reproduced here. It is the one that is currently in force, a waiver bypassing provisions of Articles 31(f) and 31 (h) of the TRIPS Agreement. The second (General Council decision WT/L/641) was adopted in 2005 on the eve of the Hong Kong Ministerial Conference. It will replace the waiver with a permanent amendment whose contents are identical, when two thirds of the WTO’s members have accepted the change.

    When the waiver and the proposed amendment were adopted, the General Council chairperson also read out a statement, which can be found on the WTO website, along with other information on the subject, here)