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Well-known marks and recognising transnational reputation (Market intelligence)
The Indian judicial system respects and upholds the rights of prior trademark users anywhere in the world. Some recent decisions involving the concepts of well-known marks and trans-border reputation serve to highlight the dynamism of the Indian courts.
Cipla-Novartis is revocation a reasonable solution? (Market intelligence)
On October 21 2014 Cipla, one of India’s largest generic drug manufacturers, sought revocation of five of Novartis’s patents under Sections 66 and 92 of the Patents Act, 1970. While generic companies in India are often at odds with multinational pharmaceutical companies over patents, what makes this dispute noteworthy is that Cipla has filed suit under Section 66 a provision that has never been used before by a generic company in India.
Emerging trends in Indian patent litigation (Market intelligence)
India’s obligation to comply with the World Intellectual Property Organisation Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights led to the enactment of the Patents Amendment Act, 2005, which made Indian patent law more or less consistent with the laws of other signatories. However, controversy continues to rage over significant issues affecting rights holders.
Biosimilar litigation and its impact on IP strategy (Market intelligence)
To succeed, developers of biosimilars must be able to demonstrate to the regulatory authorities a high degree of structural and functional similarity between their product and the approved originator product. They must further convince the authorities that the biosimilar manufacturing process is well understood, controlled and robust. Another challenge for biosimilar developers is to manufacture their product at a lower cost than the originators.
Protecting designs in India (Market intelligence)
The Designs Act 2000 and the Designs Rules 2001 (which replace the 1911 act and the 1933 rules) constitute the statutory and regulatory design laws in India. They aim to balance the competing interests of rights holders wishing to protect their designs against the public interest in common shapes being kept available.
Compulsory patent licensing (Market intelligence)
Ever since the Indian Patent Office issued a compulsory licence in favour of Indian generic manufacturer Natco Pharma for Bayer’s patented anti-cancer drug Nexavar in March 2012, which was affirmed by the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) in March 2013, interest in the compulsory licensing regime has increased significantly. Against this backdrop, it is important to understand the nature of the compulsory licensing mechanism and its implications for patentees.
Striking a balance between patents and competition (Market intelligence)
In India, the Competition Commission constituted in March 2009 is responsible for enforcing the Competition Act, 2002. Despite its relatively short tenure, the commission has proven to be a proactive regulator and has already imposed several headline-grabbing fines on enterprises for abusive conduct. A recent decision of the commission brings to the fore the overlap between competition law and IP law.
Parallel import issues under Indian trademark law (Market intelligence)
In India, parallel importation is intricately linked to the principle of exhaustion of rights under the Trademarks Act, 1999. The principle of exhaustion of rights is enshrined in Article 6 of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs), which states that “nothing in this Agreement shall be used to address the issue of the exhaustion of intellectual property rights”. Hence, each state is entitled either to prohibit or to allow parallel imports within its own legal framework.
Protecting brands in the digital space (Market intelligence)
In recent years the way that businesses operate globally has changed dramatically, thanks to the growing importance of the Internet. The situation in India is no different: consumers are increasingly turning to the Web for product information, price comparisons, special deals, discounts and even returns policies. India’s e-commerce market is estimated at $35 billion and is growing at a rate of 34% annually.
The trademark application process (Market intelligence)
India offers multiple paths to trademark protection, each of which requires a tailored strategy. Brand owners need to cover all their bases by preparing the proper documentation, whether they are seeking protection via the Madrid protocol or the local route.
Patenting computer-related inventions in India (Market intelligence)
Many foreign players remain concerned about IP rights protection in India when it comes to the patenting of computer-related inventions. In recent years the patent office has issued multiple sets of guidelines interpreting the scope of computer-related inventions and their protection. This chapter analyses the manner in which this protection has evolved, as well as the present status of computer-related inventions in India.
Casting a safety net for your database (Market intelligence)
India has no specific trade secret legislation. While patent, copyright and trademark laws have been defined in statutes, the protection of trade secrets remains a challenge. This chapter discusses the protection of databases and analyses whether they can be afforded the most appropriate protection under copyright law or by treating them as trade secrets.
Plant varieties and farmers’ rights: a balancing act (Market intelligence)
Research and development in India’s agricultural sector, improved production technologies and the availability of high-yield varieties (including during the Green Revolution) fuelled a 350%-plus growth in agricultural production between 1950 and 2008. Even so, plant varieties and farmers’ rights in India have not received as much attention as industrial property rights. But in 2001 the Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Act was introduced, providing integrated protection to both plant varieties and farmers’ rights.
Local working of patents in India: an analysis (Market intelligence)
The local working of patents is an important requirement in patent regimes all over the world including India as well as being a major source of contention. Section 83 of the Patents Act 1970 establishes the general principles regarding the working of patented inventions in India. Patentees are obliged to work their patented inventions in India for social and economic welfare in return for their 20-year monopolies.
Developing effective anti-counterfeiting and anti-piracy strategies (Market intelligence)
In order to deal effectively with the problem of counterfeiting and piracy, ad hoc solutions will not work. Rather, a comprehensive strategy for a coordinated approach involving all stakeholders is required. Developing a well-thought-out strategy at the beginning of a campaign is crucial; if the objectives are clearly spelled out from the start, the enforcement is organised and has clear direction.
Trademark litigation in 2015 and 2016: a retrospective (Market intelligence)
Indian trademark jurisprudence continued its rapid development last year, passing many important milestones. By crystallising trademark jurisprudence, the judiciary has contributed immensely to the evolving trademark ecosystem and 2015 was a year of notable volume and diversity in trademark cases and decisions.
Pharmaceutical trademark case law analysis (Market intelligence)
In the 21st century, trademarks have gained paramount importance in every industry. Pharmaceutical trademarks are particularly important, since they directly relate to public health. Pharmaceutical trademarks are subject to the same statutory regime as all other trademarks. This chapter analyses the role played by the Indian judiciary in differentiating pharmaceutical trademarks from other types of trademark.
Trademark enforcement challenges for technology companies (Market intelligence)
Although the Indian government has been quick to establish an IP policy that underscores its commitment to the protection and enforcement of IP rights, it also recognises that a consistent, transparent and efficient IP infrastructure is key to the success of this initiative. This chapter conducts a high-level audit of the civil, criminal and customs enforcement practice and procedures available to rights holders in India, with specific reference to the experience of technology companies.
The interplay between patents and anti-competitive practices (Market intelligence)
The interplay between IP rights particularly patent rights and the monitoring of anti-competitive practices under competition law is quite a recent development in India, and jurisprudence is still sketchy. It is imperative to understand the processes and practices that appear to push the envelope, from the legitimate exercise of exclusivity to unlawful anti-competitive practices. However, it is difficult to identify the exact point at which a process or practice is deemed to be anti-competitive.
The patent litigation environment in India (Market intelligence)
Since 2005 the Indian courts have witnessed a sudden spurt of patent litigation, which was an obvious consequence of putting a product patents regime for pharmaceuticals and agrochemicals in place. These patent litigations originating from India have drawn global attention. But in recent years there has been a patent litigation shift from the field of pharmaceuticals to the fields of electronics and information and communications technology.
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