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Intellectual Property and Trade

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Top South Africa Aims To Close Drug Patent Loophole That Allows For ‘Ever-Greening’

“South Africa plans to overhaul its intellectual property laws to improve access to cheaper medicines by making it harder for pharmaceutical firms to register and roll-over patents for drugs, a senior official said on Monday,” Reuters reports. The efforts to close “a loophole known as ‘ever-greening,’ whereby drug companies slightly…

HHS Global Health Official Discusses Tobacco-, Drug Patent-Related Trade Negotiations

Inside U.S. Trade features an interview with HHS Assistant Secretary for Global Affairs Nils Daulaire, who discusses how “the department is playing a larger role than ever before in the development of U.S. trade policy, including on sensitive issues in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations like a draft proposal for…

U.S. Proposes Talks Aimed At Improving Food Security At Upcoming WTO Meeting

“The United States said on Tuesday it was prepared to examine how agricultural policy reform could boost global food security as part of a package of commitments at the World Trade Organization’s [WTO] upcoming meeting in December,” Reuters reports. “‘The United States agrees with India and other proponents that enhancing…

Media Outlets Examine Reaction To India’s Supreme Court Ruling On Novartis Patent Case

“In a decisive victory for India’s pharmaceutical industry, India’s Supreme Court rejected Novartis’ patent application for the cancer drug Glivec on Monday, ending a seven-year battle by the Swiss drug maker to get a patent in India on its powerful leukemia drug,” Time reports (Mahr, 4/1). “The decision means generic…

G33 Group Pushes To Re-Open WTO Talks On Food Subsidy Rules

“The combined effects of the global economic slowdown and increasing climatic shocks are threatening food security in developing countries, prompting many to re-open World Trade Organization (WTO) discussions on limits to support for farmers,” IRIN reports. “A group of developing countries — known as G33 — is asking to exceed…

TPP Will Not Hinder Access To Essential Medicines, U.S. Commerce Secretary Says

“A wide-ranging Asia-Pacific free trade agreement will not hinder access to affordable medication, the U.S. commerce secretary said on the sidelines of an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit that concluded on October 8 in Bali, Indonesia,” IRIN reports. “But activists remain concerned after the closed-door trade talks concluded among” the…

Scientific American Examines Impact Of Government Shutdown On Health, Science Activities

Following approval of “a final deal to keep the [U.S.] government running until January 15, researchers across the nation say their work — some of it already compromised by the budget sequestration — will suffer lasting damage as a result of the 16-day shutdown,” Scientific American reports. “Health surveillance may…

Indian Health Activists Take Legal Action To Stop Patenting Of Gilead Hepatitis C Drug

“Indian health activists are seeking to prevent Gilead from patenting its new treatment for Hepatitis C in the country in a fresh battle over affordable access to medicine,” the Financial Times reports. “The Initiative for Medicines, Access & Knowledge in India said it had filed a ‘pre-grant’ application in Calcutta…

India Leads Efforts To Negotiate ‘Peace Clause’ In WTO Agriculture Agreement

“India and some other developing nations are trying to negotiate a cease-fire in a heated battle over food subsidies for the poor that is threatening to derail global trade talks, officials involved in the talks said,” the Wall Street Journal reports (Mukherji/Dalton, 11/24). “The G33 nations, a group of emerging…

In Discussion Of MERS-CoV At WHA, WHO DG Says Patents Will Not Hinder Public Health

“Dutch scientists who took out a patent on the novel coronavirus that’s killed 22 people since emerging in Saudi Arabia last year defended the move after the Saudi Health Ministry said the patent was hindering the fight against the outbreak,” Bloomberg Businessweek reports. “The virus now known as Middle East…