What was the Commission on Intellectual Property Rights?
The idea of the Commission on Intellectual Property Rights originated in the UK Government's White Paper on International Development "Eliminating World Poverty: Making Globalisation Work for the Poor" published in December 2000 (paragraphs 142-149). The aim was "…to look at the ways that intellectual property rules need to develop in the future in order to take greater account of the interests of developing countries and poor people."

What were its Terms of Reference?

The Commission was asked to consider:

  • How national IPR regimes could best be designed to benefit developing countries within the context of international agreements, including TRIPS.

  • How the international framework of rules and agreements might be improved and developed, for instance in the area of traditional knowledge - and the relationship between IPR rules and regimes covering access to genetic resources.

  • The broader policy framework needed to complement intellectual property regimes, including for instance controlling anti-competitive practices through competition policy and law.