Analysis Regional Regimes for the Protection of Intellectual Property Rights Related to Biodiversity and Community Rights

  • Nurul Barizah


In this era of bio economy, intellectual property (IP) protection for genetic resources based inventions and recognition of community rights for sustainable development becomes necessary. All regions around the world provides specific legal regimes for the protection of their genetic resources related to traditional knowledge (GRTK) and community rights after the conclusion of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules of the Trade-related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs) Agreement in 1994. This TRIPs Agreement provides a strong protection on biotechnological inventions, including living things.  The objective of this research is to analyse legal protection for both IP related to biological resources and community rights in the context of access to such resources in three different regional regimes; that are Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), African Unity, and Andean Community Nations. This research focuses on whether those influential regional integration blocks provide equitable and sufficient legal regimes as inspired by the spirit of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) to acknowledge and protect traditional knowledge (TK) and innovations of local communities as well as to accommodate the TRIPs Agreement rules. It also analyses the consistency of such regional regimes with prevailing international law in dealing with this issue.