191 The Delegation of Algeria, speaking on behalf of the African Group, recalled its joint proposal with DAG. It included important recommendations which should be implemented. The Group was pleased that the Committee was working to adopt certain recommendations and that the Secretariat was also providing comments. The Group was very happy with the approach and hoped that it would continue. The Committee should continue to examine the recommendations on the basis of the joint proposal. The Group would like some of the cross-cutting recommendations to be approved and implemented. There was a lot of value in implementing recommendations that were specific in nature as well as those that were relevant to all WIPO activities. The Group referred to recommendation A3 of the joint proposal. It was recommended that a draft policy be developed by the Secretariat, in consultation with Member States, on how WIPO should plan and organize activities and events to ensure that they were development oriented. The Group would like this to be implemented as it helped to ensure that development considerations were taken into account across the Organization. The Group drew attention to recommendation C2 on the preparation of a draft policy on extra-budgetary resources. It would be useful if this could be presented by the Secretariat. The Group also referred to recommendation D2. It recommended that a ‘gap analysis’ of staff skills and competences be carried out to understand where the Secretariat lacked skills, competencies and expertise relevant to improving the orientation, impact and management of its development cooperation activities. Lastly, the Group highlighted recommendation E2 on the preparation of guidelines to ensure that the processes for selecting independent consultants and experts were transparent. The Group attached great importance to the fact that WIPO was a member-driven organization. The Member States should be involved in the selection of experts for important activities such as development activities. The joint proposal had greatly reduced the number of recommendations. The Group hoped that all the recommendations would eventually be adopted in the future.
192 The Representative of the TWN stated that technical assistance was very important. It was critical to get it right as inappropriate assistance could have an adverse impact on development prospects. It was of utmost importance that WIPO, its Member States and the Secretariat invested time to discuss this matter and examine what was working and not working with regard to technical assistance. Transparency and added accountability were the fundamental principles that should underpin WIPO's technical assistance. Against this context, the external review provided an interesting insight into WIPO’s work on technical assistance. While the report recognized that there were some efforts in the right direction, it also raised some concerns. For instance, one key finding was that WIPO staff and activities lacked development orientation, including a clear understanding of the overall purposes of the DA. The Representative raised two other points. The first was on IP-TAD. The database was established through project document CDIP/3/INF/2. It was agreed that the Secretariat would make available general information on activities, including the objectives, expected and actual outcomes, recipients, donors, experts, speakers and evaluation reports and other relevant documentation. However, the information was not available on the database. This was also highlighted in the evaluation report on the database. The Representative understood that some information may be sensitive and confidential. However, many of WIPO's activities were regional or sub-regional seminars on various topics. Thus, information agreed to in document CDIP/3/INF/2 could easily be made available. In document CDIP/11/14, the Secretariat had acknowledged that only a limited number of activities were confidential. The Representative urged the Secretariat to immediately implement the project document agreed to by Member States. This was included in paragraph G2 of the joint proposal. It was also a recommendation of the external review. The second point was on the Roster of Consultants (RoC). Recommendation 6 of the DA required consultants to be neutral and accountable, including by avoiding potential conflicts of interest. It also required WIPO to draw up and to make widely known to Member States a Roster of Consultants for technical assistance. This recommendation had yet to be fully implemented. The RoC was voluntary and consultants had the option to disallow their information to be included in the roster. This meant that the roster did not provide full information on consultants that were used for technical assistance. The external review recommended that for those wishing to take up WIPO contracts, there should be an obligation to join the roster and provide such information. The roster also provided limited information on the consultants. It did not include CVs or information on potential conflicts of interest. Such information was crucial if the objectives of recommendation 6 were to be achieved. This point was also addressed in paragraph E3 of the joint proposal.
193 The Delegation of Japan, speaking on behalf of Group B, recalled that the EU and its Member States had put forward three very useful ideas on possible further work on this subject in the last session. First, the Secretariat could present a compilation of best practices of WIPO and non-WIPO technical assistance. Second, the Secretariat was requested to provide detailed information on the measures taken to improve internal and international coordination, including clarification of the roles and responsibilities of the various WIPO units in the delivery of IP and development technical assistance with a view to achieving coherence and unity of purpose and to avoid duplication. Third, the Secretariat could provide additional information on concrete steps taken to address recommendations in relation to cost efficiency. These proposals corresponded to recommendations that were categorized as B in the management response. Thus, they were worth pursuing further.
194 The Delegation of Egypt, speaking on behalf of DAG stated that the exercise was useful in highlighting the different elements that could be enhanced or improved to increase the relevance, orientation and development impact of the assistance provided by WIPO to developing countries and LDCs. It looked forward to further progress in this area. The Group supported the recommendations that were identified by the African Group for further discussion in this session, i.e. recommendations A3, C2, D2 and E2. It requested the Secretariat to provide an update on the implementation of these recommendations and implementation plans, if any. The Group had also identified some recommendations, i.e. recommendations C1, D2 and E3 and wanted updates to be provided on them. Recommendation C1 was on the draft Partnerships and Resource Mobilization Strategy. The Group enquired as to when this would be made available. There was a need for it to be examined and discussed. Recommendation D2 was on a gap analysis. The Group would like to know the current status with regard to this recommendation. Recommendation E3 was on the updating of the RoC. An update was also required in this regard. The Group referred to the ideas presented by the EU and its Member States in the last session and stated that it would be interested to examine them. However, these had yet to be submitted in written form for discussion.
195 The Delegation of Lithuania, speaking on behalf of the EU and its Member States, reminded the delegations of the importance of the debates on technical assistance held during the last session. They referred to their proposals made during that session which were mentioned by the Delegation of Japan on behalf of Group B. Future work on those areas would be most useful. They looked forward to further work in this field.
196 The Delegation of Brazil aligned itself with the statement made by the Delegation of Egypt on behalf of DAG. It supported the implementation of all recommendations in document CDIP/9/16. That was the only document presented by Member States on this subject. It was distributed to Member States and the recommendations were being discussed. The document should remain the basis for discussion. The Committee had started to implement some of its recommendations and should continue to analyze the document. The Delegation was open to discussing which recommendations could be prioritized.
197 The Chair invited the Secretariat to respond to the questions raised by the Delegation of Egypt on behalf of DAG.
198 The Secretariat (Mr. Onyeama) stated that it would respond to them later as inputs were required from other colleagues.
199 The Delegation of Bangladesh, speaking on behalf of the Asia Pacific Group, stated that technical assistance was provided to countries so as to assist them to achieve socio-economic development. Thus, the Group would like the provision of WIPO technical assistance to be development oriented at an optimum level. There was room for further improvement. It looked forward to further discussion on this topic.
200 The Chair invited the Delegation of Lithuania to respond to the question posed by the Delegation of Egypt on whether it was ready to submit its proposal in written form.
201 The Delegation of Lithuania, speaking on behalf of the EU and its Member States, stated that they were not ready to submit a proposal at this stage. They would coordinate on this matter and get back to the Committee.
202 The Delegation of Brazil highlighted that some recommendations were identified for implementation by the African Group. Member States should indicate whether or not they were willing to give the Secretariat a mandate to implement those recommendations. The Delegation had yet to hear any comments on them. The EU and its Member States had also made a contribution. However, this had yet to be submitted for discussion. Thus, perhaps the Committee could discuss the proposals by the African Group.
203 The Delegation of Japan, speaking on behalf of Group B, proposed a procedure for dealing with the issue. It understood that the African Group had identified four recommendations. The DAG had also identified three recommendations. The EU and its Member States had put forward three interesting ideas for further work in the last session and would consider whether these could be included in a document for discussion. Thus, it would be better for the Committee to consider which issues should be prioritized and pursued only after it had the whole picture. In that regard, the Group proposed that the discussion on this issue be suspended for the moment. The Committee could return to it after delegations were given an opportunity to consider the recommendations or work to be put on the table.
204 The Chair invited delegations to react to the proposal by Group B.
205 The Delegation of Egypt, speaking on behalf of DAG, believed that this issue was important for all Member States. They all invested in technical assistance. As such, they should all be interested and engaged to ensure that the investment yielded the highest possible returns. Thus, the Group requested delegations to show interest and engage in the process. It was also important that proposals were submitted in written form in order for them to be discussed. The last CDIP session was in May. Thus, delegations had four or five months to submit ideas or recommendations and to consider a proposal presented by two groups in the ninth session. Delegations had enough time to do so. Thus, the request for the discussion to be suspended was a bit unfair. Some recommendations were presented and identified. The Committee was waiting for the Secretariat to respond so as to be informed on progress in implementation in order to determine how these could be taken forward. Suspending the discussion without any conclusions or recommendations for the future would weaken the discussion and affect the Secretariat’s efforts in this area. Its work on the manual and the database was important and such efforts should be encouraged. Delegations must work together to further this issue and to achieve results that would benefit all Member States.
206 The Delegation of the United States of America stated that it had actively engaged in the very lengthy discussion on technical assistance at WIPO. It had looked at all the documents quite exhaustively. It was somewhat inappropriate to call upon the Secretariat to report on the implementation of certain recommendations from the DAG-African Group proposal because the Committee did not actually approve those recommendations. The Member States worked very hard in the last session and spent several days to reach consensus on a number of specific and tangible items that they felt could be achieved by the Secretariat. The Delegation was very pleased to see that the Secretariat did ably handle those specific tasks that were set forth. It also recognized, as noted by the Delegation of Egypt and DAG, that WIPO technical assistance was a matter for all Member States to be engaged in. This was because it was a substantial investment of WIPO resources, both financial and human. To that end, the Delegation recalled that the EU and its Member States, the Delegation of Japan on behalf of Group B, and themselves in previous sessions, had repeatedly asked if the Committee could consider looking at the recommendations in the various reports on technical assistance with regard to cost savings and efficiency. Indeed, a huge investment was being made in the technical assistance area. The Delegation believed that it might be a fruitful area for quite achievable, practical resolution to be reached by the Committee.
207 The Delegation of South Africa aligned itself with the statements made by the delegations of Algeria and Egypt. The Secretariat had provided information on the manual, WIPO's website and IP-TAD, as agreed in the last session. However, this was not the end of the debate on technical assistance. As stated in the Summary of the Chair for the last session, it was agreed that the Committee would continue discussions in this session on the proposals by Member States on this topic. Thus, the African Group and DAG had put forward some further recommendations which could be taken up by the Secretariat, i.e. recommendations A3, C2, D2 and E2. The Delegation requested the Secretariat to inform the Committee whether it was possible for it to implement those recommendations.
208 The Chair requested the Delegation of Japan to clarify what it meant by suspension.
209 The Delegation of Japan, speaking on behalf of Group B, acknowledged that the word “suspension” was a bit misleading. The proposal was just to give the groups some time to consider the concrete items that were put on the table at this session. The Group had constructively engaged in the discussion on this issue for a long time. Thus, the intention was not for it to be suspended. The proposal was on the procedure for this session.
210 The Delegation of Algeria, speaking on behalf of the African Group, highlighted that the joint proposal was submitted in the ninth session. The Committee was now in its twelfth session. Thus, the Group hoped that delegations had time to read the document in the past one and half years. It contained 36 recommendations whereas the report on the external review included more than 300. They had prioritized 36 of them. The Group had made tremendous efforts in order to do so. Thus, it had done its part. In each session, the Committee was identifying which of the 36 recommendations deserved implementation. As mentioned by the Delegation of the United States of America, the Committee spent many hours discussing which recommendations could be adopted in the previous session. Three were adopted and the Secretariat just presented its work on them. In this session, the Group identified four other recommendations in the joint proposal. Thus, they were not new. These crosscutting recommendations had a general impact on the Secretariat’s work and were not targeted at specific areas. The four recommendations were on general policy activities related to WIPO technical assistance. The adoption of these recommendations could assist in the discussions on technical assistance and development activities in general. Thus, it was worthwhile to look further into them. The Group would like to know how recommendations A3, C2, D2 and E2 could be implemented.
211 The Delegation of Canada fully endorsed the proposal by the Delegation of Japan on behalf of Group B. It also endorsed the statement by the Delegation of the United States of America. It was a good idea to take a further look at these recommendations. The Delegation agreed with the Delegation of South Africa that the manual was not the end of the Committee’s work on this issue. Three very interesting proposals were submitted by the EU and its Member States. The Delegation hoped that the Committee could be able to discuss them. In general, a compilation of best practices and best activities would also be interesting.
212 The Delegation of Brazil understood that the proposal by Group B was to postpone the discussion until there was a bigger picture. The EU and its Member States had just stated that they were not ready to present a written proposal at this stage. The Delegation did not see how the Committee could discuss something that was not presented. The Committee could begin by considering the items that were put forth by DAG and the African Group. The delegations that required more time to consider other items could report back to the Committee at a later stage. The Delegation stressed that the joint proposal by DAG and the African Group had been on the table since the ninth session of the Committee.
213 The Delegation of Japan, speaking on behalf of Group B, stated that the EU proposal completely related to the recommendations and was not new. Thus, the Group believed that the best way forward was to give the groups some time to consider all the concrete items that were identified at this session. The discussion could resume tomorrow morning or at some other stage.
214 The Delegation of Brazil stated that the Committee could not discuss a proposal that was not formally presented or distributed for discussion. A more efficient approach would be to look into the proposals by DAG and the African Group. Member States could state whether or not the recommendations were acceptable to them. Quick decisions could then be taken. The Committee had already discussed these recommendations. It was now time to make decisions.
215 The Delegation of the United States of America referred to the statement by the Delegation of Brazil and recalled that this matter was previously discussed when it raised the fact that the WIPO Rules of Procedure, specifically Rule 21.1, allowed delegations to make proposals orally. They did not need to be in writing. Thus, this matter had been discussed quite exhaustively in previous sessions. The Delegation called on all delegations to think about proposals for which it may be possible to achieve consensus. The Committee needed to reach consensus on proposals. It was clear that there was no consensus on the proposals that were suggested thus far. They may not be a fruitful line of discussion. However, perhaps during the break, delegations could discuss amongst themselves where there may be possible consensus.
216 The Delegation of Brazil clarified that it never said that oral statements could not be discussed by the Committee. The EU and its Member States stated that they were not able to present a document at this stage although delegations would like to discuss their proposal.
217 The Delegation of Lithuania, speaking on behalf of the EU and its Member States, clarified their position: The EU and its Member States were asked if they were in a position to present a concrete proposal in writing. It was stated that they needed to coordinate on this. However, as rightly pointed out by the Delegation of the United States of America, the topics they would like to discuss were presented in the last session of the Committee. Thus, they were not new.
218 The Delegation of South Africa referred to the Rules of Procedure. It was stated in Rule 21.1 that proposals for the adoption of amendments to the drafts submitted to the assembly, and all other proposals, may be submitted orally or in writing by any delegation. However, it was also stated in sub-rule (2) that the assembly may decide to debate and vote on a proposal only if it was submitted in writing.
219 The Delegation of Algeria, speaking on behalf of the African Group, proposed two courses of action. First, the EU and its Member States could be requested to submit their proposal in writing. Delegations and their capitals would then need time to examine the document. Second, the Secretariat could be requested to inform the Committee in the afternoon whether and how the recommendations presented by the Group and DAG could be implemented. The Secretariat’s response would help to guide the Committee in its discussions. Delegations had the right to object to the recommendations. The objections could be discussed after they were raised.
220 The Chair stated that the Delegation of Lithuania, speaking on behalf of the EU and its Member States, was very clear on the first point. They would coordinate and come back to the Committee with respect to the formulation of a written proposal. The Secretariat also clearly stated that other internal inputs were required to respond to the questions. He proposed that the Committee reconvene at 16.30pm following informal consultations on the Independent Review and the side event organized by Switzerland.
Consideration of document CDIP/12/6 - Pilot Project on IP and Design Management for Business Development in Developing and Least Developed Countries 221 The Vice-Chair opened discussions on document CDIP/12/6. At its eleventh session, the Committee considered a project proposal from the Delegation of the Republic of Korea on IP and Design Management for Business Development in Developing and Least Developed Countries. The Committee requested the Secretariat to work with the Delegation to further develop the proposal into a CDIP project document and to present it in this session. She invited the Secretariat to present the document.
222 The Secretariat (Mr. Höpperger) briefly introduced document CDIP/12/6. It contained an outline for a Pilot Project on IP and Design Management for Business Development in Developing and Least Developed Countries. As mentioned by the Vice-Chair, the initial proposal by the Delegation of the Republic of Korea was discussed in the last session. A number of questions were raised. The proposal was revised and details were included to take into consideration the comments made in the last session.
223 The Delegation of the Republic of Korea was satisfied with the business plan and budget prepared by the Secretariat. It would like Member States to approve the project. The Delegation made some suggestions to improve its implementation. First, the period allocated for analyzing design portfolios could be increased from three months to six or nine months to provide sufficient time to create designs. There was also a need to consider applications for design registration from that stage. It was crucial to consider all matters related to the granting of rights when companies were in the process of creating designs. The project was not just about the technicalities of developing designs. It would also focus on increasing capabilities and knowledge with respect to securing design rights from the initial stage of product development. Developing countries would benefit from increased incomes through improving design management for business. Developing countries would also benefit from stronger design protection for their products. Thus, the proposal could benefit all participants.
224 The Delegation of the United States of America believed that the project would be beneficial for design creators and would promote an understanding of the benefits of IP protection for SMEs in developing countries and LDCs. It also believed that the project would be beneficial to national IP offices as they would be working closely with the Secretariat in developing and implementing design protection strategies for businesses. The Delegation hoped that the project would allow national IP offices of selected Member States to gain valuable experience in order to continue such activities on their own after the end of the project period and help other SMEs to capitalize on their IP. It also hoped that the project would equip other national IP offices with necessary information to implement design protection strategies in their countries. Therefore, the Delegation supported the current proposal.