[Ip-health] 2/25 Briefing: Implications of Eli Lilly Investor-State Case

Stephanie Rosenberg srosenberg at citizen.org
Mon Feb 18 09:06:17 PST 2013

Brown Bag Lunch Briefing on Implications of Eli Lilly Investor-State Case 
Monday, February 25th at 12:00 NOON EST 
1600 20th St NW, Washington DC 
Please e-mail jboehner at citizen.org to RSVP or request dial-in information

Eli Lilly and Company has initiated formal proceedings under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) to attack Canada's standards for granting drug patents, claiming that the denial of a medicine patent by Canadian courts is an expropriation of its NAFTA-granted property rights. Eli Lilly demands $100 million from Canadian taxpayers. This is the first attempt by a patent-holding pharmaceutical corporation to use the expansive investment provisions in NAFTA or other U.S. "free trade" agreements (FTAs) as a tool to push for greater monopoly patent protections, which elevate the costs of medicines.

The "investor-state" system enshrined in FTAs allows foreign corporations to skirt domestic laws and courts and directly challenge governments' patent standards and public interest policies before foreign tribunals comprised of three private sector attorneys. Corporations can demand taxpayer compensation for policies that they allege violate special foreign investor "rights" granted by NAFTA-style FTAs. Such cases have soared over the last decade - in 2011 the cumulative number of launched investor-state cases was nine times the cumulative investor-state caseload in 2000. Foreign investors like Eli Lilly have already pocketed $365 million in taxpayer money via investor-state cases under NAFTA-style deals.

Please join us to learn how investor privileges under "trade" deals threaten countries' ability to determine patent standards and provide access to affordable medicines.

Ben Beachy, Research Director, Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch 
Burcu Kilic, Legal Counsel, Public Citizen's Global Access to Medicines Program 
Peter Maybarduk, Director, Public Citizen's Global Access to Medicines Program

*A Spanish-language briefing will be scheduled for a later date.*

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