India attaches great importance to the work of the Standing Committee on the Law of Patents (SCP). We are happy to see the adoption of a well balanced work programme for the SCP at its 19th session held in February, 2013 which retained issues such as patent and health, transfer of technology exceptions and limitations to patent rights in the agenda of the Committee.
We are of the view that quality of examination of patent applications needs to improve substantially so that we do create the huge social cost of granting patents to insignificant improvement which only lead to litigation and create barriers to technology dissemination.
On the issue of work sharing, India is of the view that this cannot be considered to be a panacea for addressing backlog and as an answer for improvement in quality of patent. Indian delegation strongly believes that work sharing will adversely affect capacity of the IP offices in developing countries in assessing an application. This, therefore, should not become an area for norm setting in future.
India is also of the considered opinion that there is a need to study the various impediments in licensing agreements relating to transfer of technology in greater details so that appropriate steps can be taken to address this.
On the issue of patents and health, we support a session for sharing information on health related patent flexibilities in the 20th session of the SCT.