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  • Writer's picturePeter K F Cheung SBS

Traditional Stuff

  1. FADE IN


  2. Act 1


  3. INT. SITTING ROOM - 12:30


  4. PETER is watching TV news.


  5. PETER (V.O.): Oh, the Peruvian Police is evicting indigenous protesters from a mine.


  6. Recalling.


  7. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I've one Peruvian lawyer friend.


  8. We hear: It's a China-owned copper mine. But the protesters say it was their ancestral land.


  9. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Peru is one of the few countries in the world that has special laws to protect traditional stuff.


  10. Peter surfs the web.


  11. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): One community sold the land and was resettled about 10 years ago.


  12. Reading.


  13. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Ah, the protesters are from another community.


  14. Act 2


  15. INT. PETER'S NT HOME - 16:00


  16. Listening to stereo extra-bass oldies, Peter grabs a book entitled "Biodiversity and Local Ecological Knowledge in France".


  17. PETER (V.O.): From 2000 to 2010, I was a China delegate to the WIPO Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore.


  18. FLASHBACK


  19. INT. WIPO, Geneva - Day (2005)


  20. Coming out from a big conference room, Peter sees a stack of free copies of "Biodiversity and Local Ecological Knowledge in France".


  21. PETER (V.O.): Well, it seems that France has done a lot and wants to fuel the debate.


  22. Peter flips through the pages.


  23. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): My baggage has room for it.


  24. Peter takes a copy.


  25. END FLASHBACK


  26. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Now is the time to read it.


  27. Reading.


  28. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Oh yes, there're French Guiana and New Caledonia.


  29. Reading.


  30. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): In the continental system, traditional stuff can be protected by Trade Marks and Geographical Indications.


  31. Recalling.


  32. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I was one of the WTO Dispute Settlement Panelists who settled similar disputes re US v European Communities and Australia v European Communities, 2004-2005.


  33. Peter finds an angle to capture its cover before decluttering the book.


  34. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): In late 2009, Hong Kong, China, was about to negotiate its 2nd Free Trade Agreement. The other side was the European Free Trade Association. (EFTA).


  35. Recalling.


  36. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): As Switzerland was taking the lead in EFTA, I thought I should take the lead to negotiate on the intellectual property (IP) front for a second time.


  37. Pausing.


  38. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): The first time I did that was to negotiate with New Zealand. It was Hong Kong, China's first bilateral Free Trade Agreement.


  39. Pausing.


  40. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): As nearly all the clauses of its IP chapter were of the best-endeavour type, it was plain sailing.


  41. Pausing.


  42. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): But the one with EFTA tuned out to be very tough. It's like what was mine was mine and what's yours was negotiable.


  43. Pausing.


  44. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Switzerland demanded Hong Kong, China, to provide level of IP protection well above the international standard, particularly on drugs.


  45. Pausing.


  46. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): The circumstances were such that the IP chapter would break or make the Agreement.


  47. Pausing.


  48. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): It was fortunate that I had put down Hong Kong, China's demand of Switzerland to provide for protection of traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expression.


  49. Pausing.


  50. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I knew Switzerland should have difficulty to do that. To me, it was quite a negotiation ploy.


  51. Recalling.


  52. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): In the last round of the negotiations, EFTA finally backed down on their demands to trade off mine; the IP chapter didn't break the Agreement.


  53. Act 3


  54. INT. SITTING ROOM - 22:30


  55. Peter and his WIFE are watching TV drama.


  56. WIFE: Oh, the broadcaster has made a NFT of the black cat being featured in the drama.

  57. PETER: Yes, that's a creative way to generate revenue streams. I'm a shareholder of the TV company.


  58. Pausing.

  59. PETER (V.O.): Looking back, I'm still proud that I creatively deployed what I had observed to balance the IP well-being of Hong Kong, China.


  60. The TV is broadcasting a news story of the re-elected French President.


  61. FADE OUT


  62. THE END











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