India's Tryst with Trips: The Patents (Amendment) Act 2005
Indian Journal of Law and Technology, Vol. 1, 2005
32 Pages Posted: 15 Aug 2005
The controversial Patents (Amendment) Act 2005 was purportedly India's final step towards achieving complete TRIPS compliance. The introduction of pharmaceutical patents and the consequent threat to an internationally renowned generic industry that has, thus far, ensured the supply of affordable drugs catapulted this legislative effort to international significance, of an extent never before witnessed in the annals of intellectual property law making in India.
The 2005 Act attempts to balance out competing interests of a variety of stakeholders, including domestic generic medicine producers, the domestic research and development community, foreign multinational pharmaceutical companies, civil society groups concerned with access to medicines and (last, but certainly not least), intellectual property lawyers. Although this delicate balancing deserves some applause, an unfortunate fall-out has been the hasty introduction of provisions that go against the grain of time tested patent law principles and are likely to provide excellent fodder for litigation. This note highlights some of the main changes brought about by the 2005 Act and reflects on some of their broader implications.
Keywords: Intellectual Property, India, Patents, TRIPS, 2005 Act, generics, public health, access to medicine
JEL Classification: O34, K00
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation