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International Organization Leaders Discuss Medical Innovation At Symposium

“The leaders of three top international organizations in Geneva last week discussed synergies in public health and called for increased collaboration and creativity to [improve] medical innovation,” Intellectual Property Watch reports. “The directors general of the WHO, World Trade Organization and World Intellectual Property Organization addressed the [July 5] opening…

Obama Administration Backs Away From Anti-Tobacco Efforts Under TPP Proposal, The Hill Reports

“The Obama administration is backing away from plans to protect U.S. tobacco-control measures from legal challenges under a pending Pacific trade deal, earning the wrath of public health groups,” The Hill’s “Global Affairs” blog reports. “The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) last year suggested creating a ‘safe harbor’…

U.S. Trade Officials Should Side With Public Health In Trade Negotiations

“Give thanks to Malaysia for heading off, at least temporarily, an American effort to weaken the ability of countries to impose stiff rules on the sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products within their own borders,” a New York Times editorial states, noting, “The Malaysian proposal to preserve that ability…

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…

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…

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…