been concerns expressed by developing country governments and
experts that the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)
has been promoting higher standards of intellectual property
(IP) protection and harmonisation without taking into account
specific needs of developing countries. Recently, Argentina
and Brazil informally circulated a groundbreaking proposal to
establish a "development agenda" at WIPO. So far this
proposal has been supported by Cuba, Bolivia and Ecuador. The
proposal raises questions as regard the general nature of WIPO
including its mandate and structure arguing, among
other things, that it is time for the institution to integrate
the UN-wide development agenda into its mandate, including the
commitments set out in the Millennium Development Goals.
of this roundtable is to bring together developed and developing
country delegates, academics, IGOs and NGOs to discuss the substantive
challenges posed by the proposal and other recent initiatives
to rethink WIPOs mandate with respect to development.
The Roundtable will be informal and off the record, and delegates
will not be expected to represent the position of their country/organisation.
Formal presentations will be kept to a minimum, allowing for
enough time for an open and frank debate.