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Governments can ration access to cancer drugs, or break patent monopolies. Why is rationing so popular?:

The European Orphan Works Directive: a missed opportunity?

Earlier this month, the European Parliament and the European Commission released a new compromise text on orphan works.

The Compromise Text is available here:

KEI sees the text as a step backwards for access to knowledge. The proposed directive makes far too many compromises, is too limited in terms of the beneficiaries and uses of works, and creates complicated, burdensome and costly procedures and record keeping requirements.

Background on earlier EU consultations

KEI letter to USTR regarding TPPA copyright provisions

The governments of Brunei, Chile, New Zealand, Singapore, Australia, Malaysia, Peru, Vietnam and the United States are negotiating a multilateral free trade agreement known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP). The negotiations are being conducted with considerable secrecy, even though they address many issues of great interest to the general public. The Agreement will cover many topics, including intellectual property rights, the pricing of pharmaceutical drugs, and the rights of investors to sue states over policies and actions that impact their investments.

AUD $2 million Australia-WIPO MOU targets TIGAR, neglected diseases, developing IP systems and technology transfer

On 15 June 2012, the World Intellectual Property Organization and the Australian Permanent Mission to the World Trade Organization signed an agreement and released a joint communiqué "detailing how an AUD$2 million Australian contribution would assist least-developed and developing countries improve their intellectual property systems".

Applauding WIPO Webcast and Video-on-Demand

Clearly WIPO could teach a few things to many agencies --other UN bodies but also for example the office of the US Trade Representatives-- regarding transparency and accessibility for all stakeholders.

Update: Global Fund responds to Report on William Steiger

The Global Fund just sent an email, which says that "your website which inaccurately reports that Mr Steiger will run VPP." Here is the Global Fund email:

From: Andrew Hurst
Date: June 20, 2012 5:36:49 PM GMT+02:00
To: Thirukumaran Balasubramaniam
Subject: RE: Question on the Global Fund's Voluntary Pooled Procurement?

Dear Thiru

Further to our conversation this week, here is our statement:

KEI and UAEM file brief as amici curiae in BRCA gene patent case

On Friday, June 15, 2012, Knowledge Ecology International (KEI) and Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM) filed as amici curiae in the case Association for Molecular Pathology, et. al. v. United States Patent and Trademark Office, et. al which is currently being heard before the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The full brief is available for download here.

The language in S. 3187, calling for National Academies evaluation of Medical Innovation inducement prizes

S.3187 Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act (Engrossed in Senate [Passed Senate] - ES)


Statement by Ecuador at June 2012 WTO TRIPS Council on copyright limitations and exceptions

This statement was delivered by Ecuador on 5 June 2012 at the WTO TRIPS Council on copyright limitations and exceptions.

5-6 DE JUNIO DE 2012

Señor Presidente,

El Ecuador da la bienvenida a la iniciativa organizada por Brasil y Estados Unidos con respecto al punto L. sobre las limitaciones y excepciones a los derechos de autor en el marco de las negociaciones en curso en la OMPI.

Rejected letter to Foreign Affairs, responding to "Healthy Governance" article about WHO

I recently sent the following letter to Andrew Bast, the editor of Foreign Affairs. The letter responds to a May 24, 2012 article by Devi Sridhar, Lawrence O.

Intervention of Chile to the TRIPS Council on Copyright Limitations and Exceptions

This statement was delivered by Chile on 5 June 2012 at the WTO TRIPS Council on copyright limitations and exceptions.


Statement by Brazil at June 2012 WTO TRIPS Council on the state of play of WIPO negotiations on a Treaty for the Blind

This was the statement delivered by Brazil on 5 June 2012 at the WTO Council for TRIPS under Agenda Item L-Copyright Limitations and Exceptions: Ongoing Negotiations At WIPO-Briefing By Brazil and the United States.

The following is the Brazilian intervention.

Last April, the President of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff, visited the United States.

The USPTO/DOC's liberal and misleading definition of IP-Intensive industries is designed to influence policy debates

At yesterday's TACD event, USPTO and KEI discussed the report by the Department of Commerce's Economics and Statistics Administration and the United States Patent and Trademark Office on Intellectual Property and employment. The report, titled: Intellectual Property and the U.S. Economy: Industries in Focus, has been widely quoted, including these bullets from its executive summary:

  • IP-intensive industries accounted for about $5.06 trillion in value added, or 34.8 percent of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP), in 2010.

5 June 2012: India's statement at WTO TRIPS Council: Exchange of information on securing supply chains against counterfeit goods

On 5 June 2012, India delivered the following intervention at the WTO Council for TRIPS on agenda item K, "Exchange of information on securing supply chains against counterfeit goods".

Intervention on Agenda Item K

(WHO donors) Gates Foundation, US, UK, Canada, Rotary Int., Norway and GAVI: Setting the agenda for global public health?

In preparation for the 65th World Health Assembly, held in Geneva from 21 May 2012 to 26 May 2012, the World Health Organization (WHO) prepared a document (A65/29 Add. 1, 5 April 2012) entitled "Voluntary contributions by fund and by donor for the financial period 2010-2011.

Recent ICE Press regarding counterfeit of pharmaceutical drugs

This is a rough list of the recent ICE press releases mentioning counterfeit and pharmaceutical. It is quite clear that the overwhelming majority of counterfeit busts involve Viagra and other erectile dysfunction drugs, a problem that will probably resolve itself once the Pfizer patents on Viagra expire.

In my quick read of the ICE press releases, I found just 12 pharmaceutical counterfeiting cases in the ICE press releases from 2009 to May 2012, with 14 defendants.

  • 13 of the 14 defendants were men.
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