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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Biodiversity and IP

India joined the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) on February 18, 1994, becoming part of the movement to promote the conservation of biodiversity and the equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the use of genetic resources. In order to conform the national laws to the mandate of the CBD, the Indian Parliament passed the BD Act, 2002. Section 6(1) of the Act lays down the provision of obtaining prior permission from the National Biodiversity Authority (NBA) for applying for any IP in or outside India for any invention based on any research or information on a biological resource obtained from India. Indian Law requires patent applicants to seek approval from the National Biodiversity Authority (NBA) before filing patent applications that use biological resources, under The Biological Diversity Act, (BDA), 2002.

6. (1) No person shall apply for any intellectual property right, by whatever name called, in or outside India for any invention based on any research or information on a biological resource obtained from India without obtaining the previous approval of the National Biodiversity Authority before making such application. Provided that if a person applies for a patent, permission of the National Biodiversity Authority may be obtained after the acceptance of the patent but before the sealing of the patent by the patent authority concerned: Provided further that the National Biodiversity Authority shall dispose of the application for permission made to it within a period of ninety days from the date of receipt thereof.

Several patent applications are based on inventions that relate to material that does not come under the definition of “Biological Resources” under the BDA act. Thus, if patent application is in respect of the following, excluded subject matter, then approval from NBA before filing patent application is not required. Value Added products: Section 2 of BDA explicitly excludes value added products from the purview of “Biological resources”. Value added products are defined as “value added products means products which may contain portions or extract of plants and animals in unrecognizable and physically inseparable form.”. For example, products such as wheat flouri , tobacco dustii, allicin-enriched garlic extractiii, were considered as value added product by the Indian Patent Office. Bio-waste: NBA approval is also not required for, inventions that use/ disclose Bio-waste. Biowaste is generated after the economic use of the biological resource/material is exhausted and is therefore not covered under the definition of “Biological resources”. Synthetically prepared biological material: Inventions that use synthetically prepared biological material, can also be filed without seeking prior approval from NBA. Such material for example includes materials such as enzymes, pigments, gums, sucrose etc. Source: Aparna Kareer 

See also WIPO website.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

CEL, India invites agents to sell defence business products in India and globally.

Central Electronics Limited (CEL) A Govt. of India DSIR Enterprise is looking to expand its business in the field of Defence products by engaging Channel Partners/Agents for the Domestic as well as the Overseas market. Interested parties having sound marketing experience in the field of Defence product business and capable to promote and sell our Defence products in domestic and overseas market are requested to submit their EOI at the office of Asst. General Manager - MMD of Central Electronics Limited. Products for which EOI is sought: 

a. Phase Control Module (PCM) for Radars Phase Control Module (PCM) is a strategic and critical component for the Passive Phased Array Radars. It is an important part of an electronically scanned passive phased array antenna that allows the antenna beam to be steered in the desired direction, without the need of any physical repositioning of the antenna of the Radar. 

b. Ceramic Radome for the Missile Seeker The Radome is an aerodynamic structural part attached to the fore end of a missile. It transmits electromagnetic signals with minimum attenuation and also protects the radar communication system of the missile while in flight. 

c. Bullet proof materials for Body Armours (Bullet Proof Jacket, HAP, SAP etc.) CEL is one of those few companies in the country who are having expertise for making technical ceramic articles from powder to the product stage. Presently we are producing Alumina ceramic tiles of different shapes and sizes for the Ballistic Protection. 

d. Laser Fencing System for perimeter security Laser Fencing System is an invisible laser wall having an intrusion alarm event that gets triggered while carrying out the video recording and also transmission. This is useful for ensuring on the Perimeter Security of strategic installations like Army Out-posts, BSF Camps, Jails, National Parks, etc. 

e. Dielectric substrates CEL manufactures alumina based dielectric substrates which are widely used in the antenna and also ammunition based products and systems. They can also be used in the RF & Microwave Filters, GPS antennas, Strip-line circuits, Circulators/Isolators, MIC’s (Monolithic IC’s), etc. 

f. Visibility Measurement System CEL is manufacturing the DRISHTI Transmissometer. DRISHTI a CSIR-NAL developed technology used to measure visibility, especially in the Aviation industry. It can measure the visibility in the range of 4 meters to 10 kilometres. DRISHTI meets the standards of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and World Metrological Organization (WMO). 

 g. Circulator & isolator CEL is a pioneer in the field of processing High-frequency Ferrites. These ferrites are used in the making of Circulators and Isolators for the Defence and Aerospace Communication systems. CEL is presently manufacturing different types Circulators and Isolators as per the customer’s requirement. h. Piezo Elements & Piezo Sensors CEL is the leading manufacturer of Piezo Ceramic Elements in the country. We have a wide range of Piezo elements and Piezo sensors. We also have been taking customized orders for the same. CEL is also currently manufacturing the ‘HEAT Fuse 551’ for the Antitank weapon system called the “Karl Gustaf-Gun.

Notice open upto : 31/12/2021 up to 15:00 Hours

The EOI is available on http://celindia.co.in/

Friday, January 15, 2021

Rules Origin under FTA- India enforces new guidelines.

Finance Minister in her Budget Speech 2020 had said “Undue claims of FTA benefits have posed threat to domestic industry. Such imports require stringent checks. In this context, suitable provisions are being incorporated in the Customs Act, 1962. Accordingly The Customs (Administration of Rules of Origin under Trade Agreements) Rules, 2020 (CAROTAR, 2020), was notified on 21st August, 2020.  The new Rules will support the importer to correctly ascertain the country of origin, properly claim the concessional duty and assist Customs authorities in smooth clearance of legitimate imports under FTAs.

India has FTAs with more than 30 countries including Japan, South Korea and Singapore, and is in the process of negotiating trade agreements with the USA, Australia, Switzerland, Norway and Iceland among others.

Reading: https://www.mondaq.com/india/international-trade-investment/986004/rules-of-origin-under-trade-agreements

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Indian Government allows Ethanol production from cereals- Fuel from Food

In a major reversal of policy Government of India allowed Cereals as feed for production of Ethanol with fiscal incentives. o achieve 20% blending by 2025 as well as to meet out the requirement of ethanol production capacity in the country, the Department of Food & Public Distribution has modified earlier scheme & notified the modified scheme for extending financial assistance to project proponents for enhancement of their ethanol distillation capacity or to set up distilleries for producing 1st Generation (1G) ethanol from feed stocks such as cereals (rice, wheat, barley, corn & sorghum), sugarcane, sugar beet etc. or converting molasses based distilleries to dual feed stock vide notification dated 14th January, 2021. 

  • In 2009, the National Policy on Biofuels stressed on the use of non-food resources to avoid a possible conflict between food and fuel. 
  • In 2018, the government modified its 2009 policy. The new National Policy on Biofuels had a target of 20 per cent blending of ethanol in petrol and 5 per cent blending of biodiesel in diesel by 2030. This was to be achieved by increasing production using second generation bio-refineries and developing new feedstock for biofuels. It allowed the production of ethanol from damaged food grains like wheat and broken rice, which are unfit for human consumption.
  • Policy 2021: To achieve 20 % blending by 2025 & to meet the requirement of chemical & other sectors, about 1200 crore liters of alcohol / ethanol would be required; out of which 900 crore liters would be required to achieve 20% blending & 300 crore liters would be the requirement of chemical & other sectors. Out of total requirement of 1200 crore liters, 700 crore liters is required to be supplied by sugar industry & another 500 crore liters need to be supplied by grain based distilleries.To produce 500 crore liters of ethanol/alcohol from food grains, about 125 LMT of food grains would be utilized; this extra consumption of surplus food grains would ultimately benefit the farmers as they will get better price for their produce and assured buyers; and thus will also increase the income of crores of farmers across the country. 


Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Institute of Eminence - Regulations relaxed, incentives needed.

The IoE regime was introduced specifically to enable Indian institutions/ universities to break into the top 500 (and eventually top 100 of world institutions rankings and also to facilitate global recognition of Indian universities. IoEs enjoy significantly more autonomy in terms of their curriculum, fee structure, faculty, course structure, admissions, collaborations with foreign universities, etc., compared to other institutions.

read : http://www.nishithdesai.com/information/news-storage/news-details/newsid/6423/html/1.html


Issues:

1. For Government funded institutes- recruitment of foreign faculty

2. For private institutions- R&D grants.

3. Climate- Absence of International Universities in India.



Friday, January 01, 2021

BARC technologies for COVID.


 

BARC has broughout special bulletin on various technologies developed/ adopted for COVID.

Download: http://www.barc.gov.in/publications/bulletin-final-compact.pdf

Technologies available for transfer: http://www.barc.gov.in/technologies/technology.html


draft Science, Technology and Innovation Policy for public comments before 25th January 2021

 GOI released draft draft Science, Technology and Innovation Policy on 1st January. Highlights:

Broad vision- To double the number of Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) researchers, Gross Dimestic Expenditture on R&D (GERD) and private sector contribution to the GERD every 5 years.

Open Data Policy for Publicly Funded Research: All data used in and generated from public-funded research will be available to everyone (larger scientific community and public) under FAIR3 (findable, accessible, interoperable and reusable) terms. Wherever applicable, exceptions will be made on grounds of privacy, national security and Intellectual Property Rights (IPR).

Transforming existing R&D institutions to research universities. This will foster better linkages between research and education and also enable effective utilization of research infrastructure.

Foreign MultiNational Companies (MNCs): Foreign MNCs play an integral role in boosting India’s economy. To gainfully measure and assess the contributions made by foreign MNCs in the STI financing landscape, innovative methods to capture them will be developed.

Boosting fiscal incentives for industries investing in STI through incremental R&D based tax incentives, tax credit for investing in facilities for commercialization, tax holidays, tax waivers, target-based tax incentive for specific domains, tax deduction, expatriate tax regimes, remodelling of patent box regime etc. There will be a reassessment of the possibility of reviving weighted deduction provisions (of expenditure incurred on in-house R&D).

Flexible mechanism for supplier development programmes for public procurement in all sectors (especially earmarked for Small & Medium Enterprises - SMEs and Start-ups).

Reassessment of regulatory control on STI landscape to promote innovative enterprises. It is recommended that the Central Government re-examine and widen the scope of R&D expenditure. Further, the government may determine the right mix of loan, equity and grants to assist Indian industries for technology up-gradation and commercialization. Further, to attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in STI, reduction in corporate tax rates for foreign MNCs, fast track clearances, easing land acquisitions, adequate means for incorporating FDI etc. will be explored on a need basis.

To undertake efficient governing mechanisms for the STI funding landscape, a national STI Financing Authority will be created.

Modification/waiver of General Financial Rules, for large scale mission mode programmes and projects of national importance will be explored. A new model for funding, implementation and monitoring of such programmes will be developed, either as an overarching mechanism or through obtaining cabinet approvals in respect of individual programmes. In addition, certain GFRs will be required to be amended for funding of R&D projects to facilitate ease of doing research.

Commentary:

A great compilation of wish list. There is something for every stakeholder.  STI Financing Authority , modification/ waiver of GFR are radical proposals in Indian context.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

GOI invites EoI from Indian Companies / Consortia interested in acquisition of Semiconductor FAB outside India

Government of India is keen to incentivize and attract investment for setting up of Semiconductor FABs in India. Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has issued  Expression of Interest (EoI) dated 15.12.2020 for Setting up / Expansion of existing Semiconductor Wafer / Device Fabrication (FAB) facilities in India or acquisition of Semiconductor FABs outside India. Last date for submission of EoI proposal is 31.01.2021.

Eligibility criteria under Category C includes Indian Companies / Consortia interested in acquisition of Semiconductor FAB outside India.

Interested parties can submit Financial support desired from the Government of India, including Grant-in-Aid (GIA), Viability Gap Funding (VGF) in the form of Equity and / or Long-Term Interest Free Loan (LIFL), tax incentives, infrastructure support, etc.