The World Trade Organization ("WTO") has agreed to extend the deadline of the transition period of the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights ("TRIPS") for the next 13-years, i.e. till 1 July 2034, in respect of the Least Developed Countries ("LDCs"). The WTO originally set the transition period up to 1 July 2021. It is also significant to note that early in 2005 and then 2013, the WTO has extended the transition period.

The TRIPS Agreement allows members to provide extensive protection of the intellectual property. The transition period given under Article 66.1 of the TRIPS Agreement is a period during which the LDCs do not have to provide the intellectual property rights protection according to the minimum requirements of the TRIPS Agreement. Under the agreed decision of WTO members, it would not require the LDCs to apply for any other provisions except for Articles 3, 4, and 5 of the TRIPS Agreement.

The extension of the transition period has benefited the LDCs to overcome the financial and technological challenges.

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