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

WTO responds to concerns of the European Parliament on ACTA

In a letter dated 4 May 2010, the Director General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Pascal Lamy has responded to questions and concerns of the European Parliament regarding the Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).

KEI statement on possible WTO disputes against the EU seizures of goods in transit

12 May 2010

Statement of Knowledge Ecology International on possible WTO disputes against the EU seizures of goods in transit

Thiru Balasubramaniam, Geneva Representative

“In a world with territorial patent rights, it is important that the rules for ‘goods in transit’ permit the transport of medicines from places where they can be made to places where they will be used. The EU's systematic seizure of at least 17 drug consignments is indefensible and undermines the very principle of free trade, the raison d’être of the World Trade Organization.

KEI Statement on USTR 301 list

USTR has released its 2010 Special 301 list. Closely following the IIPI and the PhRMA asks, the Special 301 Priority Watch List countries are: Algeria, Argentina, Canada, Chile, China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Russia, Thailand, and Venezuela. Among high income countries, Finland, Norway and Spain made the Watch list this year. Sweden was off.

April 28 TACD meeting on ACTA and Consumers, at the US Department of Commerce in Washington, DC

Note: Updates on TACD web page are available here.

On April 21, 2010, an official version of the consolidated negotiating text of the proposal Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) was published. Next Wednesday, April 28, 2010, the Trans-Atlantic Consumer Dialogue (TACD) will host a series of roundtable discussions about the new ACTA text at the US Department of commerce, Washington, DC from 9am to 3pm.

Senator Wyden issues statement on release of ACTA negotiating text, warns "poorly constructed agreement" would harm consumers

This is an important statement by Senator Ron Wyden, the Chair of the Senate Subcommittee on International Trade, Customs and Global Competitiveness. He mentions the importance of transparency in giving the public an opportunity to "understand and shape" the agreement, and he warns that a "poorly constructed agreement could be harmful to consumers’ ability to use the Internet and could stifle the type of innovation needed to create new American jobs."

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden

Consolidated ACTA text is released, without country positions

Today the first public draft of the ACTA text was released. A copy is available here. Earlier leaked versions of the text, which include country positions, are the January 18, 2010 consolidated text, a February 2010 EU memorandum of the selected sections, and seven documents from 2008.

Briefing on the Report of the WHO Expert Working Group on R&D Financing

Briefing on the Report of the WHO Expert Working Group on R&D Financing

19 April, 2010
Geneva, Switzerland
Rue de Lausanne 78, Salle LEH
Médecins Sans Frontières

The WHA Executive Board (EB) has been asked to submit to the 2010 World Health Assembly (WHA) a report by the the WHO Expert Working Group on R&D Financing. This report was presented to the WHO EB in January 2010. A meeting of the EB to consider the report will be held on May 13, 2010.

The briefing on Monday April 19 will review the following topics.


9:30am – 10:00am

April 28 TACD meeting on ACTA and Consumers, at the US Department of Commerce in Washington, DC

See updates on TACD web page here:

On April 28, TACD will be holding a meeting from 9 am to 3 pm at the U.S. Department of Commerce, in Washington, DC, to discuss the proposed Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA).

ACTA Provisions on Injunctions and Damages

KEI has issued a new research note, Comments on ACTA Provisions on Injunctions and Damages, KEI Research Note 2010:1, dated April 6, 2010.

DOJ files amicus brief supporting controversial use of copyright claim to block parallel trade of Omega watches

In a parallel trade case involving Costco, a popular discount outlet, and Omega, the Swiss watchmaker, the US Department of Justice has come down against U.S. consumers, backing the Swiss companies use of copyright laws to block imports of watches sold at lower prices outside of the US, by Omega. A copy of the DOJ brief is available here. Costco filed a response, which is available here.

Federal judge in Myriad patent case says invalidation of gene patents does not violate TRIPS

In today's court ruling in Association for Molecular Pathology, et al. v. USPTO, et al., Judge Robert Sweet rejected claims by Myriad that invaliding the patents would be an unconstitutional taking, or violate the WTO TRIPS Agreement. In discussing the TRIPS, Judge Sweet mentioned Article 8.1 and 27.3 of the TRIPS.

Details of New Zealand meeting between ACTA negotiators and private sector stakeholders

Ben King of the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has kindly provided some details of the April 13, 2010 meeting between ACTA negotiators and private sector stakeholders. The event is "by invitation only" but we are told it will include civil society groups. Inquiries about April 13 event can be forwarded to

-------- Forwarded Message --------
From: KING, Ben (WSH)
To: Jamie Love
Subject: From New Zealand Embassy
Date: 03/28/2010


Hi Jamie

KEI on leaked EU Canada trade agreement IPR Chapter

Michael Geist has leaked the lasted draft of the intellectual property chapter of the Canada - EU Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement. These are some brief comments on the new document.

It applies to both parties.
When a very large trading partner negotiates with a smaller one, it is sometimes overlooked that the norms are designed to bind both parties. So the Canada/EU IPR agreement should be of interest to Canada and the 27 members of the European Union.

NAFTA provisions on enforcement of intellectual property rights

In looking at how enforcement norms are being changed in ACTA, it is helpful to review the enforcement chapter of NAFTA.

Article 1714: Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights: General Provisions

USTR asks that briefing on position on ACTA transparency be off the record

The January 2010 Guadalajara, Mexico, meeting on ACTA included an agenda item on transparency. I asked USTR if they could provide TACD with a briefing on transparency and other issues in the negotiation. The one hour briefing was held today. I can report nothing of what the USTR said at the meeting, other than they insisted it be off the record. TACD has asked for an on the record meeting, but that apparently will have to wait until after the New Zealand meetings are held the week of April 12.

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