Hyderabad, July 21, 2017 – As negotiators for the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) trade agreement meet for another round of negotiations in Hyderabad next week, networks of people living with HIV/AIDS from different parts of the country, public health experts from the region and Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) will mobilise in the city to demand the removal of damaging rules proposed in the trade deal that threaten to undermine access to affordable medicines for millions of people worldwide.
Two countries – Japan and South Korea – are expected to continue pushing India and the ten member states of ASEAN to agree to intellectual property (IP) provisions that expand and introduce new monopolies for pharmaceutical corporations, undermining generic competition that is critical for lowering medicine prices and ensuring access to affordable medicines for procurers, treatment providers and patients. Continue reading
Even though the Agreement on the trade-related aspects of intellectual property rights
(TRIPS) set the minimum standards of protection and enforcement of intellectual
property (IP) rights, it could not harmonise the various national patent laws. Irrespective
of the regional patent system still patent rights are territorial. As a result, a patent
granted in one country does not automatically translate into a patent in another medicines. Disappointed by this IP maximalists through developed countries are using various means to harmonise the patent law with developed countries’ patent law.
The primary route is by pushing developing countries to implement IP protection and
enforcement obligations that go beyond the TRIPS Agreement. Towards this purpose
developed countries have initiated various unilateral, bilateral, plurilateral and
multilateral initiatives. The ultimate aim of these initiatives is to eliminate the current
diversity existing in the substantial patent law and to replace it with a harmonised
patent law favouring patent holders. These efforts, if succeeded, would have adverse
economic and social implications for developing countries.
July 19, 2017 | New Delhi, India
Released at the Press Club of India
On July 18, 2017 the 19th round of RCEP (Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership) negotiations began in Hyderabad. While the subject-wise Working Groups formed under the RCEP are meeting this week, the high-level Trade Negotiation Committee (TNC) with chief negotiators from 16 countries will have discussions from 24-28 July. 700 officials from the 16 negotiating countries – ASEAN 10 plus ASEAN’s six FTA partners including India, China and Australia, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand, are gathering to negotiate the RCEP.
By Josh Kovensky, KyivPost | June 16, 2017
A doctor checks a patient for Hepatitis C in Zaporizhiya. As much as 10 percent of the Ukrainian population could be infected with the disease.
Multinational pharmaceutical firm Gilead Sciences has found a way to make money in Ukraine.
The company markets an anti-hepatitis C drug in Ukraine called Sofosbuvir. The drug has a 94 percent healing rate, a potential lifesaver for the country’s infected millions.
But after a competing generic appeared on the market in 2015, Gilead orchestrated a multi-pronged pressure campaign against the Ukrainian government to enforce its monopoly. Continue reading
Media Release | July 10, 2017
“We welcome the international tribunal decision that Philip Morris tobacco company should pay the costs of its failed case against Australia’s 2011 plain packaging law. But it is absurd and unacceptable that the tribunal has not released the amount of the costs, which have been blacked out of the published decision,” Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network Convener Dr Patricia Ranald said today. Continue reading
Ellen ‘t Hoen, Pascale Boulet & Brook K. Baker
Source: 10 J. Pharmaceutical Policy & Practice (June 2017) DOI 10.1186/s40545-017-0107-9, https://joppp.biomedcentral.com/track/pdf/10.1186/s40545-017-0107-9?site=joppp.biomedcentral.com
The challenge of providing access to high-priced patented medicines is a global problem affecting all countries. A decade and a half ago the use of flexibilities contained in the World Trade Organization Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, in particular compulsory licensing, was seen as a mechanism to respond to high-price medicines for the treatment of HIV/AIDS in low- and middle-income countries. Today a number of upper-income European Union (EU) Member States are contemplating the use of compulsory licensing in their efforts to reduce expenditure on pharmaceutical products. EU regulation of clinical test data protection and the granting of market exclusivity interfere with the effective use of compulsory licensing by EU Member States and can even prevent access to off-patent medicines because they prohibit registration of generic equivalents. Continue reading