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Is the WTO TRIPS Agreement
valid and self-executing in Brazil?

The TRIPS Agreement in Brazil

On April 12, 1994, the Federal Register published a presidential Executive Order appointing the Brazilian delegation and the plenipotentiary (chief of the delegation) to sign the Marrakesh Agreement. This was the first official notice by the executive branch suggesting its interest in joining the Uruguay Round and the WTO Agreement, which notice was published at large to the nation.

As reported on May 3, 1994, by Peter D. Sutherland, the former GATT Director-General, the Brazilian plenipotentiary sent by the executive branch signed the Final Act subject to ratification. This information was also made later made available in Brazil by a presidential order (Executive Order #1,355/94).

The Brazilian delegation immediately forwarded the country’s original copy for translation of the Final Act by the Brazilian Foreign Service (Itamaraty) in order to submit, as appropriate, the WTO Agreement for the consideration of the respective competent authorities with a view to seeking approval of the Agreement in accordance with the legal procedures.

After receiving the Portuguese translation of the WTO Agreement prepared by Itamaraty from the Minister responsible for foreign affairs, the Brazilian President made the political decision to send presidential message 489/94 to Congress, seeking approval (advice and consent) for the WTO Agreement, as per article 49, I, of the Brazilian Constitution.