Adherences to the conventions and agreements administered by WIPO increased. From January to May 1998, 32 instruments of ratification or accession were deposited with the Director General (16 by countries with economies in transition, 12 by developing countries, and four by industrialized countries). They concerned the WIPO Convention (3), Paris Convention (4), Berne Convention (3), Madrid Agreement (Marks) (1), Madrid Protocol (4), Nice Agreement (2), Locarno Agreement (2), PCT (2), IPC (2), Vienna Agreement (1), Budapest Treaty (1), Nairobi Treaty (1), TLT (4), Rome Convention (1) and the Film Register Treaty (1).
Publication of these adherences in the monthly review, in press releases, and on the Internet gave wide publicity to this upsurge in new adherences.
In the period under review, there was a marked decrease in formal staff appeals, and no formal staff appeal was launched against an individual administrative decision.
Contracts Review Facility
Provided legal advice in the course of the negotiation and preparation of ten contracts proposed to be entered into by the Organization.
Used some 15 distribution contracts as a basis to create a simplified standard agreement.
The contracts entered into were new, simplified standard agreements. resulting in more commercially favorable contract terms and, thus, a reasonable saving in costs.
WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center
Established in October 1994, the Center initially focused on organizing a basic legal and administrative infrastructure for the settlement of disputes between private parties. This included the development of the WIPO Mediation, Arbitration, and Expedited Arbitration Rules. Concurrently, conferences and other contacts were used to promote the advantages of the WIPO Rules and recommend dispute-settlement clauses. The Center also formed the basis for new and specialized services in the field of dispute-resolution, such as training workshops.
Redesigned the Center’s web site to include additional functions and facilities. Established an on-line electronic infrastructure for dispute resolution procedures, including reception and tracking of cases, neutral appointments, and fee administration.
Organized and conducted five training programs for neutrals, and, in particular, addressing issues concerning domain name disputes. Developed WIPO on-line expedited arbitration rules.