Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Leaked TPPA Texts Reveal U.S. Undermining Access To Medicine | Scoop News

“New leaked texts proposed by the United States to the Trans-Pacific Free Trade Agreement show that the Obama administration has again increased demands on developing countries to trade away access to medicines. The new leaked proposals on intellectual property roll back even modest Bush era commitments to safeguard public health in trade pacts.”
— Peter Maybarduk, Public Citizen [see full analysis]

“The leaked text confirms the worst fears of health officials. The Obama White House is walking back the core concessions on patent extensions, patent linkage and test data protection that were negotiated with the Bush White House in May 2007. Obama is now objectively much worse than Bush on these issues. It may help the White House raise campaign money from big drug companies, or help USTR officials find their next high paying job working as lobbyists for the drug companies. It is a huge disappointment for us. The texts cover complex issues, and it is hard to summarize all that is important. Even as regards to the reference to the WTO Doha Agreement, the White House tries to sneak in text that makes it appear as though it is limited to only some diseases or emergencies. Collectively, the provisions are designed to strengthen IPR monopolies on drugs, and make it harder to regulate prices. The consequences of stronger monopolies and higher prices are less access to medicine.”
— James Love, Knowledge Ecology International

“All countries negotiating the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement should reject the US proposal regulating pharmaceutical reimbursement programs. This is an extreme proposal that has no place in a trade negotiation, particularly one with some of the poorest countries in the world.”
— Prof. Sean Flynn, Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property, American University Washington College of Law [see full analysis]

“Despite the apparent focus on procedures, the [regulatory coherence] proposal also has substantive biases in favour of light-handed regulation — a model that has proved highly problematic in many countries and sectors, not the least the financial industry.”
— Prof. Jane Kelsey, School of Law, University of Auckland [see full analysis]

“The leaked draft intellectual property proposals by the United States for the Trans-Pacific Free Trade Agreement have confirmed our fears that the Obama administration is walking away from previous efforts to ensure that developing countries can access affordable medicines, setting a dangerous new standard that will likely be replicated in future trade agreements with developing nations. The administration is touting a so-called ‘access window’ as a mechanism to boost access to medicines. In fact, the administration is confusing access with affordability. The ‘access window’ is all about getting brand-name drugs to market faster, and giving their producers longer monopoly rights that prevent price-lowering competition and keeping medicines out of the hands of the millions of people who need them. Our doctors who work across the developing world rely on affordable generic medicines to trade patients. For example, competition among generic manufacturers is what brought down drug prices for HIV/AIDS by 99 percent, from US$10,000 per person per year to roughly $100 today. Trade agreements of the type being pushed this week in Peru threaten these types of crucial gains in access to life-saving medicines.”
— Judit Rius Sanjuan, Medecins Sans Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders [see full analysis]

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