Intellectual property rights and Australia

Natalie attended the 2012 WTO Public Forum in Geneva where she represented The University of Melbourne: Faculty of Business & Economics. She is currently studying a Bachelor of Commerce and is a recipient of the Commerce Opportunity Bursary.


The Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement is an integral component of the outcomes of the Uruguay Round in 1995. It resulted from a series of negotiations by the World Trade Organization (WTO) members that aimed to address the increasing need in protecting human’s innovation. At the most basic level, TRIPS was essentially created to establish the minimum standards by which WTO expects its members to enforce the protection of intellectual property rights. Furthermore, TRIPS reiterates the importance of transparency in the governance of national economies. WTO members, upon signing TRIPS, are subjected to the WTO periodic reviews about their intellectual property rights protection system. This paper attempts to give an overview of Australia’s obligations under TRIPS and what attempts have been made by the Australian government to fulfil these obligations.  

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