Compulsory licensing in India and the ‘big pharma’ debate

By Neha Mittal & Divya Srinivasan, LexOrbis

A patent enshrines not only a bundle of rights given to an innovator or inventor, but also provides them with a timeframe for monopoly as given under the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) regime.

TRIPS also provides for the concept of “compulsory licensing”, the mechanistic formula in order to check the abuse of patent rights, especially by pharmaceutical giants, which flows from the rigidity of a country’s patent system.

The following is a brief overview of compulsory licensing as practised in India.

Neha Mittal LexOrbis律师事务所 首席律师 Principal Associate LexOrbis
Neha Mittal
Principal Associate

Licence: the last resort

A compulsory licence (CL) is a statutory licence provided by the government by way of which a generic company is allowed to manufacture and sell a generic version of the patented drug at a cheaper price. The sale of this generic drug is generally a move opposed by the patentee.

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Neha Mittal is a principal associate and Divya Srinivasan is an associate of LexOrbis


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