Leaked IP Chapter, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) FTA, Oct 3, 2014 | Knowledge Ecology International

Attached (here) is the October 3, 2014 version of the Draft Text, of the Intellectual Property Chapter, for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), Free Trade Agreement, tabled by South Korea in the negotiations. (More about the RCEP here)

The next round of negotiation will be held in Kyoto, Japan from 8-12 June.

The text is terrible, and includes a number of provisions that are controversial in the TPP negotiations.

For example, for damages in cases involving infringement, Korea has proposed the aggressive standard promoted by the United States in other trade agreements.

(b) in determining damages for infringement of intellectual property rights, its judicial authorities shall consider, inter alia, the value of the infringed good or service, measured by the market price, the suggested retail price, or other legitimate measure of value submitted by the right holder.

Life plus 70 years, or 70 years, for terms not based upon the life of an individual, for the copyright term:

2. Each Party shall provide that, where the term of protection of a work(including a photographic work), performance, phonogram or broadcasting is to be calculated:

(a) on the basis of the life of a natural person, the term shall be not less than the life of the author and 70 years after the author’s death; and . . .

Reference to a 3-step test for patent exceptions, but no reference to the WTO exceptions for compulsory licenses. (See commentary on this issue here: KEI TPP Briefing note 2015:1 Compulsory licenses on patents and the 3-step test).

3. Each Party may provide limited exceptions to the exclusive rights conferred by a patent, provided that such exceptions do not unreasonably conflict with a normal exploitation of the patent and do not unreasonably prejudice the legitimate interests of the patent owner, taking account of the legitimate interests of third parties.

Likewise in the section on copyright and related rights, the agreement would impose a 3-step test on limitations and exceptions (something increasingly common in trade agreements), without acknowledging or protecting the different standards for “particular” or “specific” exceptions found in the Berne or Rome conventions. (See: http://keionline.org/BerneConventionExceptions for more on the Berne exceptions).

Section B : Copyright and Related Rights

Article [X.B.7]: Limitations and Exceptions

Each Party shall confine limitations or exceptions to exclusive rights to certain special cases that do not conflict with a normal exploitation of the work, performance, phonogram or broadcasting, and do not unreasonably prejudice the legitimate interests of the right holder.

The provision in the agreement on “undisclosed information” merely makes a reference to Article 39 of the TRIPS, but it gives right holders a new and separate fora for not only enforcing those rights, but interpreting them.

Article [X.F.2]: Undisclosed Information

The Parties shall ensure in its laws and regulations adequate and effective protection of undisclosed information in accordance with Article 39 of the TRIPS Agreement.

via Leaked IP Chapter, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) FTA, Oct 3, 2014 | Knowledge Ecology International.


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