Jayashree Watal


Jayashree Watal retired from the Intellectual Property, Government Procurement and Competition Division of the World Trade Organization in mid-2019, where she had contributed inter alia to work on TRIPS and public health, Patents, Undisclosed information, Economics of TRIPS, IP and Transfer of Technology, and IP and Competition Policy. She assisted the then Director of the Intellectual Property Division on the negotiations that led up to the adoption of the Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health in November 2001; the interim waiver solution in August 2003; and the Protocol on the amendment that resulted in a new article 31bis in December 2005. Prior to joining the WTO, she has had more than twenty-two years of experience in government in India. She represented India at a crucial stage in the Uruguay Round TRIPS negotiations from 1989-90, contributing substantially to the development of the text. She currently holds the position of Honorary Professor at the National Law University, Delhi (since August 2019) and Adjunct Professor at the Georgetown University Law Centre (since 2009), teaching a course on International Trade, Intellectual Property and Public Health every year at Georgetown Law, except 2020-21. She was a member of the Governance Board of the Medicines Patent Pool, a non-profit organization based in Geneva for six years until mid-2021 and continues to be consulted by the MPP board on strategy. She holds several part-time consulting positions, including with the UK Department of International Trade, Summit Alliance International and the International Trade Centre, to assist WTO members and observers on TRIPS-related issues. Ms. Watal holds post-graduate degrees in both law and economics. She is the co-editor of three WTO books: A Handbook on the TRIPS Agreement, (Cambridge University Press, 2012/2021); The Making of the TRIPS Agreement, (WTO, 2015); and Trade in Knowledge (Cambridge University Press, 2021). She has authored a book Intellectual Property Rights in the WTO and Developing Countries (Oxford University Press, India and Kluwer Law International, 2001) and several peer-reviewed journal articles on issues related to the law/economics of intellectual property rights.

Recently Published

Analysis of the 12th WTO Ministerial Conference Decision on the TRIPS Agreement

The MC12 TRIPS Decision makes available a new waiver, with respect to COVID-19 vaccines, of an existing obligation contained in TRIPS Article 31(f) that states that exports under a compulsory licence must be restricted to the non-predominant part of the authorized amount. However, paragraph 9 of the Decision explicitly states that it is without prejudice to existing…

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