As the UN World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO) General Assembly gets underway and the budget for the upcoming biennium is determined, there are two developments that occurred during the first week of meetings that are worth mentioning: (1) Nigeria’s ratification of WIPO copyright treaties and (2) the debates surrounding the interpretation of the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore’s (IGC) proposed programme of work.
The UN World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO) General Assembly meetings will be taking place October 2 – 11 in Geneva, Switzerland. Several topics are on the agenda pertaining to the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR), Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP), and the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore (IGC).
The Delegation of Senegal on behalf of the African Group submitted a proposal for the IGC regarding a potential work program for the 2018/19 Biennium. The focus of the work program will be to draft a legally binding contract for Genetic Resources while focusing on “policy objectives, definitions, subject matter of protection, scope of protection, and disclosure requirements.” (p. 4) Additionally, the Delegation of the European Union on behalf of the European Union and its Member States created a proposal for the IGC Mandate of 2018/19, as the WIPO General Assembly agreed at the last meeting that the mandate of the IGC Committee be renewed.