[Ip-health] UNDP, Unitaid, and WHO caught in Big Pharma's crosshairs

James Love james.love at keionline.org
Thu Mar 7 05:55:51 PST 2019


Peter Pitts, just who are the "assassins" you are referring to?

Any of these companies that recently received compulsory licenses?

https://www.keionline.org/us-injunction-medical

On Thu, Mar 7, 2019 at 6:52 AM Peter Pitts <ppitts at cmpi.org> wrote:

> It is not unfair, considering recent actions and statements (some from
> this list serve) that these NGOs are viewed as IP assassins. Dialogue not
> diatribes are required.
>
> Peter
>
> Peter J. Pitts
>
> > On Mar 7, 2019, at 12:40 PM, Thiru Balasubramaniam <thiru at keionline.org>
> wrote:
> >
> > https://www.keionline.org/29817
> > UNDP, Unitaid, and WHO caught in Big Pharma’s crosshairsPosted on March
> 6,
> > 2019 by ThiruPhRMA’s Special 301 submissions are part of a yearly ritual
> to
> > shape the “Special 301” Report, an annual review of the global state of
> > intellectual property rights (IPR) protection and enforcement, conducted
> by
> > the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) pursuant to
> > Section 182 of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended by the Omnibus Trade and
> > Competitiveness Act of 1988 and the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (enacted
> > in 1994).
> >
> > Not content with the naming and shaming countries deemed deficient in
> their
> > protection of intellectual property rights, PhRMA’s 2019 Special 301
> > submission trains its sights on multilateral organizations and UN
> agencies
> > including the World Health Organization the United Nations Development
> > Program (UNDP), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
> > (UNCTAD), and Unitaid.
> >
> > What appears to gall PhRMA is the work of WHO, UNDP, UNCTAD and Unitaid
> in
> > providing the technical assistance on the application and use of WTO
> TRIPS
> > flexibilities to promote access to medicines and safeguard public health.
> >
> > In the words of PhRMA:
> >
> > Multilateral organizations that once served as custodians of the
> > international rules-based system increasingly are seeking to undermine
> and
> > even eliminate intellectual property protections that drive and sustain
> > biopharmaceutical innovation in the United States and around the world.
> By
> > reinterpreting international agreements and through meetings, reports,
> > guidelines and training programs, the WHO, the United Nations Development
> > Program (UNDP), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
> > (UNCTAD), Unitaid and other organizations are promoting acts, policies
> and
> > practices globally and in specific countries that prevent
> biopharmaceutical
> > innovators from securing and maintaining patents, protecting regulatory
> > test data and from enjoying fair and equitable market access.
> >
> > PhRMA specifically targeted UNDP and Unitaid for promoting strict
> > patentability criteria. In a fit of pique, PhRMA described UNDP as not
> > appearing to have “specialized expertise on intellectual property
> matters”
> > in relation to UNDP’s 2016 publication, Guidelines for the Examination of
> > Patent Applications relating to Pharmaceuticals
> > <
> https://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/librarypage/hiv-aids/guidelines-for-the-examination-of-patent-applications-relating-t.html
> >.
> > PhRMA trained its crosshairs on Unitaid
> > <
> https://unitaid.org/news-blog/unitaid-expands-its-work-on-access-to-medicines/#en
> >
> > for
> > funding the work of the International Treatment Preparedness Coalition
> > (ITPC), South Centre, and Third World Network to work on the
> “flexibilities
> > and provisions under global intellectual property agreements and laws to
> > improve access to affordable medicines in order to safeguard public
> > health.” (Source: Unitaid)
> >
> > In addition, multilateral organizations such as UNDP and Unitaid advocate
> > actively for patentability restrictions and additional patentability
> > requirements that are inconsistent with international practice. For
> > example, although UNDP does not appear to have specialized expertise on
> > intellectual property matters, it issued patent examination guidelines in
> > 2016 that, if followed, would prevent innovators from securing patents on
> > many kinds of biopharmaceutical inventions. Similarly, Unitaid partnered
> > with various non-governmental organizations in 2018 to launch a campaign
> to
> > erode intellectual property policies and laws globally.
> >
> > In its 220 page submission, PhRMA calls for the “[f]ostering and
> > strengthening” of coalitions to support innovation at multilateral fora
> > including the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the World Intellectual
> > Property Organization (WIPO) noting that even these fora are vulnerable
> to
> > work “inappropriately focused on limitations and exceptions to
> intellectual
> > property rights, if not actively seeking to undermine and even eliminate
> > the intellectual property protections that drive America’s innovation
> > economy.”
> >
> > All this provides a valuable foundation on which to build in the coming
> > year and beyond. Fostering and strengthening coalitions that support
> > innovation will be particularly critical in multilateral organizations,
> > such as the WHO, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO),the
> > WTO, UNDP, UNCTAD and Unitaid, where work can be inappropriately focused
> on
> > limitations and exceptions to intellectual property rights, if not
> actively
> > seeking to undermine and even eliminate the intellectual property
> > protections that drive America’s innovation economy. This is even the
> case
> > at WIPO – an organization that was created to “encourage creative
> activity”
> > and to “promote the protection of intellectual property throughout the
> > world.”
> >
> > While PhRMA has trained its sights on the development work of
> multilateral
> > institutions including UNDP, UNCTAD, Unitaid, WHO, and even WIPO and WTO,
> > it remains to be seen how USTR will respond in its 2019 Special 301
> Report.
> >
> > James Love, Director, Knowledge Ecology International, provided the
> > following comment.
> >
> > PhRMA is seeking to use its immense power and influence with President
> > Trump to twist the mission of UN agencies and intergovernmental bodies
> like
> > Unitaid, on matters involving access for billions of persons living in
> > developing countries. President Trump should reject this pressure, from
> an
> > industry that is “getting away with murder” on a regular basis, and sees
> > itself as a regulator of governments, not an industry to be regulated.
> >
> > Ellen ‘t Hoen, LLM, PhD. Director, Medicines Law & Policy, provided the
> > following response.
> >
> > One wonders what the pharmaceutical industry has to gain from going after
> > institutions that do so much to prevent disease, promote health and
> access
> > to care. We have seen pharma attacks on global health institutions for
> > decades. But this time around it seems more deliberate and coordinated.
> >
> > Diarmaid McDonald, Lead Organiser, Just Treatment, provided this comment:
> >
> > The US pharmaceutical industry is going after the World Health
> Organisation
> > – and other important international bodies – for promoting lifesaving
> legal
> > routes to affordable medicines. Remember, if @PhRMA are pissed off with
> > you, you’re doing something right. As pressure grows on the US
> > pharmaceutical industry with broad congressional support for legislative
> > efforts to curb the high drug prices crippling American healthcare Phrma
> > and Trump seem to be focused not on solving the problem, but exporting it
> > around the world. Everything these important institutions are doing is
> good
> > for global health and completely legal. They should stand strong for
> > patients against US and industry aggression.
> >
> > Brook K. Baker, Senior Policy Analyst Health GAP (Global Access Project),
> > stated:
> >
> > The U.S. government has not waited for PhRMA’s formal Special 301
> > submission to start exerting pressure on multilateral institutions to
> stop
> > all work supporting adoption, use, and protection of public health
> > flexibilities allowed under international law. These flexibilities –
> > negotiated within the World Trade Organization and signed onto by the
> U.S.
> > – give countries policy options for rejecting weak patents, denying
> > monopolies on test data, and allowing competition from generics to
> increase
> > access to affordable medicines. NGO activists know about U.S. backroom
> > pressure on the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria,
> which
> > the U.S. funds, and even on Unitaid, which it does not fund. The
> > “flexibilities” that PhRMA complains about are integral features of the
> > international IP bargain, and thankfully PhRMA did not get everything it
> > wanted in the TRIPS Agreement. PhRMA likes to think that the U.S. should
> be
> > its strike force to expand its bloated monopoly profits and to silence IP
> > reformers pursuing fully lawful ends. All too often the U.S. follows the
> > orders of its PhRMA puppet masters with no regard for the legality of its
> > efforts or the morality of pricing billions of people out of access to
> > life-saving medicines.
> >
> > Katy Athersuch, Senior Policy Adviser – Medical Innovation & Access,
> > Médecins Sans Frontières- Access Campaign, provided this response:
> >
> > The overreach of PhRMA in attacking multilateral organisations mandated
> to
> > promote health and safe lives is astonishing. To read their submission is
> > to imagine a dystopian reality where the 2001 WTO Doha Declaration on the
> > TRIPS Agreement and Public Health never existed. The work done by
> UNITAID,
> > WHO and UNDP to support countries in their legal rights to use the
> > flexibilities outlined in the TRIPS Agreement to ensure that the right to
> > health takes precedent over other private rights is essential lifesaving
> > work.
> >
> >
> >
> > --
> > Thiru Balasubramaniam
> > Geneva Representative
> > Knowledge Ecology International
> > 41 22 791 6727
> > thiru at keionline.org
> > _______________________________________________
> > Ip-health mailing list
> > Ip-health at lists.keionline.org
> >
> http://lists.keionline.org/mailman/listinfo/ip-health_lists.keionline.org
> _______________________________________________
> Ip-health mailing list
> Ip-health at lists.keionline.org
> http://lists.keionline.org/mailman/listinfo/ip-health_lists.keionline.org
>


-- 
James Love.  Knowledge Ecology International
http://www.keionline.org <http://www.keionline.org/donate.html>
twitter.com/jamie_love


More information about the Ip-health mailing list