New draft IP law will restrict patentability
On May 29, 2015, Ecuador established a draft bill for a new and comprehensive IP law.
The Organic Code of Social Economy of Knowledge, Creativity and Innovation, known as draft bill INGENIOS and recently approved by the Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa, was sent to the Legislative Authority (National Assembly) for debate.The aim of INGENIOS is developing an Ecuadorian productive model by encouraging local research and innovation and reducing imported technology.
This draft bill will repeal the current Ecuadorian IPlaw, which dates from the late 90s. According to Rene Ramirez, staff of the National Secretariat for Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation (SENESCYT), which released the new draft law, the current IP law has failed since it “has neither created any innovation nor attracted direct foreign investment […] It was a law designed to favor multinationals […] and this has prevented the local industry from developing.”
Regarding patents, article 256 of the new draft law excludes from patentability the following products as inventions: new forms of a known substance, such as salts, esters, ethers, complexes, combinations and other derivatives; polymorphs, metabolites, pure forms, particle sizes, and isomers of a known substance; uses in general and any new property or use of a known substance, or the use of a known procedure or machine; genetic resources containing biological diversity and agro-biodiversity. Additionally, article 261 excludes from patentability traditional knowledge of indigenous and/or local communities related to, for example, biodiversity, agriculture or health.
In the case of claims referred to a group of chemical or pharmaceutical products, article 271 of the draft law requires that the application provide enough information about assays and experiments to reproduce each embodiment of the invention. Furthermore, article 272 requires that the abstract include the generic name of the pharmaceutical product when it is known at the time of filing. Both these requirements are clearly aimed to limit the scope of the application to specific products, instead of Markush formulas.
Click here to read the draft bill INGENIOS.
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