Proponents of a sweeping World Trade Organization ‘waiver’ on intellectual property rights for all COVID-19 treatments, tests and vaccines face an uphill battle to reach consensus on a text ahead of a WTO General Council meeting scheduled for 27-28 July.  This is despite the recent agreement of the initiative’s opponents, including the European Union, Korea, […] Continue reading ->
In preparation for the next pandemic, the COVAX global vaccine facility “needs a pot of money, where they can be early movers” in competing for, and securing, vaccine doses. That could help scenarios like the ones seen recently, in which rich countries cornered the market on the first available COVID-19 vaccines, leading to severe shortages […] Continue reading ->
World Trade Organization’s (WTO) director general Ngozi Onkonjo-Iweala on Thursday hailed the United States government’s decision to support the suspension of intellectual property rules on COVID-19 vaccines – while also emphasising the urgency of even more immediate actions to increase vaccine supplies to lower-income countries.   In a statement after a two-day closed-door WTO General […] Continue reading ->
The United States has swung its weight behind a hotly-debated proposal by India and South Africa to suspend intellectual property rights on COVID-19 vaccines for the duration of the pandemic. The dramatic turnabout in the US position, announced Wednesday evening by US Trade Representative Katherine Tai, signals a sea change in the balance of powers […] Continue reading ->
CAPE TOWN – The “circular discussion” at the World Trade Organization (WTO) on the TRIPS waiver needs to move to “text-based” negotiations, Ambassador Xolelwa Mlumbi-Peter, South Africa’s Permanent Representative to the WTO said on Tuesday. Her Indian counterpart, Brajendra Navnit, added that opponents of the waiver had been using “delaying tactics” since the beginning of […] Continue reading ->
A growing consensus seems to be emerging out of this week’s high-level WTO meeting that glaring inequities in access to vaccines can be remedied by strengthening supply chains, avoiding export bans across borders, and ensuring that big pharma voluntarily transfers its vaccine technologies to poorer countries so they can produce their own vaccines.  “The significant […] Continue reading ->
The World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Trade Organization (WTO) both are hosting key global meetings aimed at improving global access to COVID-19 vaccines and fair medicine prices this week behind closed doors. The WHO Fair Pricing Forum started on Tuesday and its stated aim is to activate “additional support for countries to achieve […] Continue reading ->