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"a "technical" requirement..." "...would not be acceptable to theUnited States of America"



On Mon, 24 Mar 2003 19:21:43 +0100
Carsten Svaneborg <sslug@sslug> wrote:

> http://www.firstmonday.dk/issues/issue8_3/kahin/index.html

"...the U.S. Government is urging the rest of the world to do away with
limits on patentable subject matter in a proposed World Intellectual
Property Organization (WIPO) treaty on substantive patent law. In May,
the U.S. threatened to walk out of negotiations if the treat does not
mandate patents for all fields of activity, whether or not they fall
within common notions of "technology" [2].

->

[2] Report, 7th Session, WIPO Standing Committee on Patent Law,
Geneva, 6-10 May 2002, adopted 25 November 2002 as document SCP/7/8; see
paragraphs 159-173, especially the exchange between the European and
U.S. delegations at 170-171;
http://www.wipo.org/scp/en/documents/session_7/index.htm.

->

167. With regard to paragraph (4), the Delegations of Cuba and Mexico
also expressed their support for the inclusion of that paragraph. The
Delegation of the United States of America also welcomed the
reintroduction of the industrial applicability/utility requirement into
the Treaty, since utility was an important requirement for the United
States of America. The Delegation, however, was of the view that the
industrial applicability standards in certain systems might require a
claimed invention to have a technical character or technical effect. The
Delegation was also concerned that such a provision might also be used
to refuse the patenting of inventions that were considered to be private
in nature. The Delegation saw no reason to limit patentability in such a
manner; the criteria should be that the invention has utility, is novel
and involves an inventive step. The Delegation expressed further concern
that an "industrial applicability" standard could stifle the development
of new areas of innovation, such as software, biotechnology, or other
newly developing areas that could not be foreseen now and that might
defy definition according to the current understanding of what is meant
by"industrial."


170. The Representative of the EPO observed that, in deciding the
conditions of patentability, it was necessary to take account of what
was politically possible. She stated that the Treaty should not force a
Contracting Party to adopt a stricter standard of patentability than it
had at present. She therefore suggested that, as regards patentable
subject matter and exceptions, the SPLT should reflect the current
international consensus, which was the TRIPS Agreement standard, and
provide an express provision allowing a Contracting Party to protect a
broader range of subject matter. As regards the requirement concerning
"technical character," the Representative suggested that this concept be
confined to those provisions in which it was really necessary and that a
Contracting Party be allowed not to require the "technical character" of
the invention. These suggestions received preliminary support by the
Delegation of Sweden.

171. The Delegation of the United States of America stated that it could
support neither a"technical" requirement in the SPLT nor the importation
of the very minimal standards of protection that were found in the TRIPS
Agreement, nor an "industry" or "industrial-based" standard on the issue
of industrial applicability or utility. The Delegation expressed the
view that the inclusion of a "technical" or "industrial" requirement
would result in the standards for protection for inventions throughout
the world to slip backwards, eroding the level of protection for
inventors and inventions everywhere. The Delegation was of the opinion
that the end result of the discussions, if it were based in part on any
of those elements, would not be acceptable to the United States of
America, and accordingly, the Delegation might well have to reconsider
its participation in those discussions. The Delegation stated that it
had come to the negotiations in good faith in that many provisions in
the draft SPLT would require fundamental changes to the United States
patent system. However, the Delegation stated that its continued
participation was contingent on similar good faith from all members of
the Committee.

http://www.wipo.org/scp/en/documents/session_7/pdf/scp7_8.pdf


 
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