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WTO mulling intellectual property waivers for vaccines – Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu, Hawaii 2021-05-05 03:45:00 –

Geneva >> On Wednesday, ambassadors of World Trade Organization countries announced the technology behind the COVID-19 vaccine as pressure on rich countries to mitigate them as a way to help developing countries fight pandemics. We will discuss trade rules that protect know-how.

The WTO General Council addressed the temporary exemption from intellectual property protection first proposed by South Africa and India in October. This idea has gained support among developing countries and progressive Western legislators.

The authors of the proposal, facing resistance from many countries with an influential pharmaceutical industry, amend it in the hope of making it more palatable.

The two-day conference of Ambassadors on Wednesday and Thursday was not expected to reach the consensus required by WTO regulations.

Co-sponsors of the exemption idea were traversing between different diplomatic missions to make their claims, according to Geneva trade officials who were not allowed to speak publicly about the debate. Officials said the impasse continued and the other side remained far away.

Some civil society groups said last month that US President Joe Biden’s chief trade officer, Katherine Tai, “completely” inequality in access to the COVID-19 vaccine between developed and developing countries. It’s unacceptable, “he said, saying he hopes the proposal will be approved after the mistake. What has been done in the global response to the HIV pandemic should not be repeated.

This debate is part of a long-standing debate on intellectual property protection, unprotecting patents, copyrights, industrial design and confidential information, and expanding vaccine production and deployment in times of supply shortages. Focuses on. The purpose is to suspend the rules for several years, long enough to defeat the pandemic.

The problem is exacerbated by the surge in cases in India, the second most populous country in the world and a major producer of vaccines, including vaccines based on Western technology.

Proponents, including the head of the World Health Organization, said that such exemptions were part of the WTO Toolbox, killing 3.2 million people and infecting more than 437 people more than during a 100-year pandemic. Claims that there is no good time to use. A devastated economy with millions of people around the world.

Opponents say waivers are not a panacea. They argue that the production of the COVID-19 vaccine is complex and cannot be simply increased by mitigating intellectual property, and that deprotection could undermine future innovation. ..



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