[Ip-health] DNP+ letter to WHO on impact study on IP provisions in the India-EU FTA

Thiru Balasubramaniam thiru at keionline.org
Tue Jan 25 06:40:24 PST 2011


Dr. Samlee Plianbangchang
19-1-2011
Regional Director
World Health Organization
South-East Asia Region
Indraprastha Estate
New Delhi-110002, India
Ph: 91-11-23370804, 23370809-11

Fax: 91-11-23370197, 23379395, 23379507

Re: WHO's impact study on IP provisions in the India-EU FTA

Dear Dr. Plianbangchang,

I am writing on behalf of the Delhi Network of Positive People (DNP+).  
Our
organization was founded in 1999 as a support group of people living  
with
HIV/AIDS (PLHIV). We actively work towards universal treatment access  
and
provide support services to the PLHIV community.

We would like to draw your attention to the ongoing negotiations between
Indian Government and European Commission for a free trade agreement
specifically on Intellectual Property (IP) and investment that will  
create
barriers for the production of life-saving low cost quality generic
medicines.

European Commission's "TRIPS-plus" demands relevant for pharmaceuticals
relate to introduction of supplementary protection certificates  
(patent term
extension) and data exclusivity.

In particular, intellectual property provisions like data exclusivity  
would
mean that multinational companies will enjoy several years of market
exclusivity (monopoly) in India on even off patent medicines - with  
their
cheaper, domestically produced generic versions not registered and  
available
for several years.

The India-EU FTA negotiations are ongoing and are now in a crucial phase
with both governments publicly emphasizing that the trade agreement is
likely to be concluded in the next few months.

In order to stop our government from literally trading away our lives,  
we
rely on the studies of scientists, economists, pharmacists, lawyers,
intellectual property experts. We want to highlight the harmful impact  
of
the EU-India Free Trade Agreement on access to affordable generic  
medicines.


We know that WHO - Regional Office for South-East Asia had initiated and
completed a study estimating the economic impact of the adoption of an
intellectual property rights regime (IPR) on access to medicines. The  
study
based on a model developed by WHO and PAHO focused on the impact of  
product
patents for pharmaceuticals, patent term extension and data  
exclusivity on
the production and availability of generic medicines in/from India.

Already in our personal experience, patents in India on Cancer, HIV,
hepatitis medicines are making treatment expensive for newer therapy for
these diseases.

Therefore this study can prove to be a very crucial tool for us in
advocating about the impact of product patent regime in India and how  
TRIPS
plus measures including data exclusivity if implemented in India may  
affect
the lives of millions of patients in the developing world. In  
particular the
study can play a key role in convincing Indian decision makers that  
the IP
provisions like data exclusivity are in fact detrimental for patients in
India and other developing countries.

We would therefore like to request you to share the study with us and  
other
public interest groups at the earliest.

We would like to thank you in advance,

Sincerely,

Vikas Ahuja
President
Delhi Network of Positive People

------------------------------------------------------------


Thiru Balasubramaniam
Geneva Representative
Knowledge Ecology International (KEI)
thiru at keionline.org


Tel: +41 22 791 6727
Mobile: +41 76 508 0997








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