Industrial and intellectual property rights in the Uruguay round and beyond.
Journal of Development Studies, 25(3) pp. 373–400.
The current Uruguay Round of negotiations in GATT is considering the issues of industrial and intellectual property rights (IIPRs), trade in services and direct foreign investment. Although these issues are not linked conceptually, they have come to be integrated in a single policy initiative in which the US government is particularly active. The major reason for targetting IIPRs for reform is that there are major changes in technology which render the inherited regime anachronistic. This article considers these changes in technology, describes the implications for property rights and discusses the current policy negotiations in GATT. It concludes by pointing to the key role being played by the USA and questions whether this is likely to endure given the undermining of the technologically dominant position of the US economy.
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