Indicators of the Relative Importance of IPRs In Developing Countries

Date: Apr, 2002
ODID Working Paper No. 85
Author(s): Sanjaya Lall and Manuel Albaladejo (QEH)

There remains considerable controversy on the economic impact of TRIPS (interpreted here as the tightening of IPRs) in developing countries; needless to say, the new round of WTO negotiations adds considerable interest to this controversy. This paper focuses on the long-term structural issues concerning the impact of TRIPS on industrial and technology development in poor countries. It does not, therefore, deal with such important current issues as the cost of medicines, agricultural inputs or genetic materials. Even in the analysis of technology development, it has a limited objective. It seeks to indicate the potential significance of IPRs by differentiating developing countries according to the expected impact of stronger protection. It does not measure statistically the strength of IPR regimes or their impact on development as such.

ODID Author(s)