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of international action is required to achieve compliance with the CBD. Within
this broad group, however, there are different views regarding prescriptions: one
subgroup suggests action in relation to the intellectual property rights system,
while the other has not committed itself to the position that TRIPS needs to be
amended to promote the objectives of the CBD. 6
The following box gives examples of measures taken by developing countries
to protect their traditional knowledge and non-human genetic resources while the
discussions at the WTO continue.
Box 3.1 Proactive Measures by Developing Countries to Protect
their Traditional Knowledge and Biodiversity
Peru has established a National Antibiopiracy Commission (NAC) to iden-
tify, prevent and avoid acts of biopiracy, which involve biological resources of
Peruvian origin and traditional knowledge of the indigenous peoples of Peru. The
NAC has focused on identifying potential cases of biopiracy, as part of which it
has looked for pending patent applications or patents granted abroad that seek to
protect inventions apparently obtained from or developed on the basis of key bio-
logical resources including the traditional knowledge of Peru's indigenous peo-
ples. Initially six biological resources of Peruvian origin are being monitored.
Similarly, India's Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has
launched a Traditional Knowledge Digital Library (TKDL) project to codify
and disclose writings in ancient Sanskrit scriptures from as far back as the
twelfth century BC. With respect to TKDL Unani, a team of 30 Unani experts,
information technology experts and scientists is currently working to develop
a database of previously disclosed Unani literature. The project was launched
in 2002. After completing 36,000 formulations in five international languages,
significant work has been carried out on the Ayurvedic system of traditional
medicine. This initiative is likely to be expanded to the Siddha system of tradi-
tional medicine in South Asia.
In China a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) patent database has been
launched. It is in both Chinese and English. The Chinese language version contains
more than 12,124 deeply indexed records of TCM patent literature with 32,603
TCM formulas. The English language database is a demo version that was pre-
pared for and demonstrated at the third session of the committee of WIPO, contain-
ing 1,761 records of TCM patent literature in English, with 4,177 TCM formulas.
(For measures taken by Brazil, see conclusion of this chapter).
Source: Research and Information System for Developing Countries ( 2007 ).
6 Australia(IP/C/M/48); Canada(IP/C/M/47); New Zealand (IP/C/M/47); Andean community
(IP/C/M/37/Add.1, paragraph 231); Brazil(IP/C/W/228); China(IP/C/M/47, paragraph 57).
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