The Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, also known as the TRIPS Agreement, entered into force on January 1, 1995. The WTO states that the agreement "introduced intellectual property rules into the multilateral trading system for the first time".
The WTO also states,
"The agreement covers five broad issues:
- how basic principles of the trading system and other international intellectual property agreements should be applied
- how to give adequate protection to intellectual property rights
- how countries should enforce those rights adequately in their own territories
- how to settle disputes on intellectual property between members of the WTO
- special transitional arrangements during the period when the new system is being introduced."