Ghana TRIPS Over the TRIPS Agreement on Plant Breeders' Rights
The premise under which the global IP system is validated has often focused on a traditional materialistic approach. While this seems to find legitimate support in economic reasoning, such a fundamental view also appears to contradict a related social norm claim which dictates that society ought to be shaped by appropriate values rather than economic rubrics. Although Ghana is not a signatory member of the UPOV Convention, there is explicit evidence that the PBRs Bill under consideration in Parliament contains provisions modelled on the UPOV Act 1991 rather than the potentially flexible and “effective sui generis system” in TRIPS. This paper aims to contribute to a recently active area of discussion on the topic by examining the consequences of stringent legislation on PBRs in the absence of adequate safeguard measures to protect public interests. Consequently, the hypothesis of this paper rests on the argument that every system needs checks and balances and the legislative system is no exception; therefore, social policy matters must be integrated into the so-called PBRs Bill in order not to undervalue public interests. To conclude, the author presents an argument based on a logical balance that ought to be found on the path to promulgating such legislation.