Negotiations on the TRIPS Waiver

The European Parliament voted in favour of starting negotiations on the TRIPS Waiver!

Yesterday, a resolution was adopted with consensus to encourage the European Commission to continue and support the talks in the World Trade Organisation on the TRIPS Waiver. This is a non-binding advice to the European Commission but  we still need to keep the pressure on!

Retweet our allies to recognize this new win and increase pressure on the Commission:
European Member states gather during a European Council on 24-25 June.

Already announced, but to celebrate again: president Macron declared his support for the TRIPS Waiver, after meeting with a group of French NGO’s. Big congrats to you!
Our Tweet:
Macrons Tweet:

Analyses on WTO TRIPS Council by Third World Network
The European Union, the United Kingdom, Switzerland and Korea reiterated their opposition to waiving TRIPS provisions as a response to COVID-19 and positioned themselves in strong support to the EU’s communication of 4 June – Urgent trade policy responses to the COVID-19 crisis: Intellectual Property (IP/C/W/680). This proposal calls for limiting export restrictions, supporting the expansion of production and facilitating the use of current compulsory licensing provisions in the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), particularly by waiving the requirement to negotiate with the right holder of the vaccine patent.

The European Union said to be ready to immediately start a discussion based on the proposal set out in that communication and announced its intention to follow up with a more elaborated text. At the same time, the EU is ready to continue discussing the revised waiver proposal in the course of additional meetings of the TRIPS Council, the EU delegate added. The final objective must be finding a way forward in the discussion on the role of intellectual property in enhancing access to affordable COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics and proceed with concrete, short and medium term solutions to enhance universal access to COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics at affordable prices.

The EU agreed that intellectual property rights (IPRs) should not stand in the way of deploying existing capacity, or creating new capacity, or of ensuring that access to COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics is equitable, but noted that it is possible to achieve this objective while at the same time maintaining the protection required for incentivizing technology transfer and investment in innovation, so that members can fight against new strains of COVID-19 and any future diseases.

The EU proposed that as part of this discussion WTO members agree as soon as possible on the global trade initiative for equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics, encompassing three components: trade facilitation and disciplines on export restrictions; concrete actions to expand production and ensure supply of vaccines at affordable prices to low- and middle-income countries during the pandemic; and further clarification and facilitation of TRIPS Agreement flexibilities, relating to compulsory licenses.

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