Unlike other intellectual property agreements, TRIPS has an effective enforcement mechanism. States can be disciplined by the WTO dispute settlement mechanism. In the list below, click an agreement to view the relevant disputes. In accordance with the general rule of Article 7(1) of the Berne Convention, as amended by the TRIPS Agreement, the term of protection is the life of the author and 50 years after his death. In certain cases, paragraphs 2 to 4 of that Article expressly allow shorter durations. This has been supported by the United Nations` findings, which indicate that many low-protection countries currently benefit from significant foreign direct investment (FDI).  Analysis of OECD countries in the 1980s and 1990s (during which the patent term of medicines was extended by 6 years) showed that, although the total number of registered products increased slightly, the average innovation index remained unchanged.  In contrast, Jörg Baten, Nicola Bianchi and Petra Moser (2017)  find historical evidence that, in certain circumstances, compulsory licensing – a key mechanism for weakening intellectual property rights under Article 31 of TRIPS – can indeed be effective in promoting inventions by increasing the threat of competition in areas with low reservations. The wealth concentration effects of TRIPS (the movement of money from people in developing countries to copyright and patent holders in industrialized countries) and the imposition of artificial shortages on citizens of countries that would otherwise have had weaker intellectual property laws are common bases for such criticism.
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