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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: June 2020

7 - Trade-Related Aspects of Traditional Knowledge Protection

from Part II - Building a More Equitable and Inclusive Free Trade Agreement


In Chapter 7 on trade-related aspects of traditional knowledge protection, Oluwatobiloba Moody looks at the proliferation of provisions related to traditional knowledge and genetic resources in trade agreements. He questions whether trade agreements are the correct instrument to protect traditional knowledge particularly from biopiracy and other abuses. Although he argues that trade agreements could play an important role in addressing key aspects of traditional knowledge protection, he suggests that such protection should not occur in a vacuum. These provisions should rather complement and/or reinforce the international commitments and/or domestic frameworks of negotiating parties. The misappropriation and commodification of traditional knowledge through trade agreements must be pursued with caution, by parties to international trade agreements and by Indigenous peoples. Protection of traditional knowledge must involve consultation with Indigenous groups to ensure that these new provisions in trade agreements do not abrogate their established rights.

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