Proposed Extraordinary WIPO General Assembly Decision Text: 9:20 PM-17 December 2012

After a tense day of negotiation with all sorts of threats to block progress, it seems as though World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) is poised to approve a diplomatic conference "to negotiate and adopt a treaty on limitations and exceptions for visually impaired persons/persons with print disabilities." The USA had come into the meeting trying to downgrade the agreement from a treaty to an agreement of ambiguous non-treaty status, and both the US and the EU wanted today's decision to be subject to a later approval -- dubbed either the kill switch or the safety valve by the US and EU publisher friendly delegations. But in the end, the support for the diplomatic conference and the treaty prevailed and the following text will be considered at 10 AM Geneva time on 18 December 2012 at the plenary.

(More on this negotiation at http://keionline.org/r2r)

WIPO released the Proposed Extraordinary GA Decision Text to convene a Diplomatic Conference to negotiate and adopt a Treaty for the Blind in June 2013.

Proposed Extraordinary GA Decision Text
December 17, 2012 9:20 pm

This Assembly:

(1) decides to convene a Diplomatic Conference on limitations and exceptions for visually impaired persons/persons with print disabilities to be held in June 2013. The mandate of this Conference is to negotiate and adopt a treaty on limitations and exceptions for visually impaired persons/persons with print disabilities (pursuant to the draft text in SCCR/25/2).

(2) convenes a Preparatory Committee on December 18, 2012, to establish the necessary modalities of the Diplomatic Conference. The Preparatory Committee will consider at this time the draft Rules of Procedure to be presented for adoption to the Diplomatic Conference, the list of invitees to participate in the Conference, and the text of the draft letters of invitation, as well as any other document or organizational question relating to the Diplomatic Conference. The Preparatory Committee will also approve the Basic Proposal for the administrative and final provisions of the Treaty.

(3) welcomes with gratitude the offer of the Kingdom of Morocco to host the Diplomatic Conference in June 2013.

(4) directs the SCCR to meet in special session for five days in February 2013 to expedite further text-based work on document SCCR/25/2, in order to reach a sufficient level of agreement on the text, and directs the Preparatory Committee to meet at the end of the February SCCR meeting to decide, if needed, whether additional work is required with the objective of holding a successful Conference in June 2013. It is understood that the Preparatory Committee will invite Observer Delegations and Observers.

(5) agrees that document SCCR/25/2, the Draft Text of an International Agreement/Treaty on Limitations and Exceptions for Visually Impaired Persons/Persons with Print Disabilities, will constitute the substantive articles of the Basic Proposal for the Diplomatic Conference. The Preparatory Committee shall incorporate in the Basic Proposal such further agreements of the SCCR as are reached pursuant to paragraph (4) above, with the understanding that any Member State and the special delegation of the European Union may make proposals at the Diplomatic Conference.