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Cross-border intellectual property rights: contract enforcement and absorptive capacity

  • A. Naghavi
  • Y. Tsai

This paper studies cross-border intellectual property rights (IPR) as a North-South contract using a Nash bargaining approach and distinguishes between the outcome and its actual enforcement. The absorptive capacity of the Southern country to exploit technology transfer plays a key role in the negotiated level of IPRs and its post-treaty enforcement. The optimal level of IPR protection relates positively to absorptive capacity. This provides a rationale for the longer time-frame provided to least developed countries in Article 66 of TRIPS to implement its provisions. In addition, monitoring is only effective in preventing contract violation up to a critical level of absorptive capacity. We relate this to the US Trade Representative “Special 301” report, which flags countries that deny adequate IPR protection as “priority watch list”. While disputes with less developed economies are promptly resolved, emerging economies, where most losses from copyright piracy originates from, continue to remain on the list.

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Paper provided by Dipartimento Scienze Economiche, Universita' di Bologna in its series Working Papers with number wp809.

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Date of creation: Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:bol:bodewp:wp809
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  1. Gene M Grossman & Edwin L Lai, 2004. "International Protection of Intellectual Property," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000000442, David K. Levine.
  2. Alireza Naghavi, 2005. "Strategic Intellectual Property Rights Policy and North-South Technology Transfer," Working Papers 2005.18, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  3. Lall, Sanjaya, 2003. "Indicators of the relative importance of IPRs in developing countries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(9), pages 1657-1680, October.
  4. Michelle Connolly & Diego Valderrama, 2005. "Implications of Intellectual Property Rights for Dynamic Gains from Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(2), pages 318-322, May.
  5. Smarzynska Javorcik, Beata, 2004. "The composition of foreign direct investment and protection of intellectual property rights: Evidence from transition economies," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 39-62, February.
  6. M. Scott Taylor, 1993. "TRIPS, Trade, and Technology Transfer," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 26(3), pages 625-37, August.
  7. Suzanne Scotchmer, 2002. "The Political Economy of Intellectual Property Treaties," Industrial Organization 0201004, EconWPA.
  8. Barbara J. Spencer & James A. Brander, 1983. "International R&D Rivalry and Industrial Strategy," NBER Working Papers 1192, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Eric Chiang, 2003. "Determinants of Cross-Border Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement: The Role of Trade Sanctions," Working Papers 03001, Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University.
  10. Dyuti Banerjee, 2011. "On the sufficiency of regulatory enforcement in combating piracy," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 40(2), pages 160-176, October.
  11. Leahy, Dermot & Naghavi, Alireza, 2006. "Intellectual Property Rights and Entry into a Foreign Market: FDI vs Joint Ventures," CEPR Discussion Papers 5672, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. James R. Markusen, 1998. "Contracts, Intellectual Property Rights, and Multinational Investment in Developing Countries," NBER Working Papers 6448, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Jeong-Eon Kim & Harvey E. Lapan, 2008. "Heterogeneity of southern countries and southern intellectual property rights policy," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 41(3), pages 894-925, August.
  14. Zigic, Kresimir, 1998. "Intellectual property rights violations and spillovers in North-South trade," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(9), pages 1779-1799, November.
  15. Deardorff, Alan V, 1992. "Welfare Effects of Global Patent Protection," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 59(233), pages 35-51, February.
  16. Vishwasrao, Sharmila, 1994. "Intellectual property rights and the mode of technology transfer," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 381-402, August.
  17. Glass, Amy Jocelyn & Saggi, Kamal, 2002. "Intellectual property rights and foreign direct investment," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(2), pages 387-410, March.
  18. Zigic, Kresimir, 2000. "Strategic trade policy, intellectual property rights protection, and North-South trade," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 27-60, February.
  19. Yang, Guifang & Maskus, Keith E., 2001. "Intellectual property rights, licensing, and innovation in an endogenous product-cycle model," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 169-187, February.
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