Of possible interest

The US Secretary General High Level Panel on Access to Medicine. KEI submissions.

Request to NIH and Army to use government royalty free or march-in rights in the prostate cancer drug Xtandi.

Proposal for a WTO Agreement on the Supply of Public Goods.

Prices and patents on drugs, vaccines and diagnosis of hepatitis.

Innovation inducement prizes, possibly as an alternative to IPR monopolies to reward successful innovation.

Now is a good time to donate money to KEI

KEI Timelines, on a variety of topics.

Poll

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

KEI comments to the WIPO patent committee discussion of patent quality

During today's discussion at the WIPO Standing Committee on the Law of Patents (SCP) on patent quality KEI make four points in its intervention.

1. WIPO should consider gathering information on the costs of litigation to challenge the validity of patents.

2. WIPO should consider creating a database to share information on the cases where litigation has resulted findings that patent claims as invalid.

WIPO patent committee discusses Exception and Limitations to Patent Rights

The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has convened the 16th session of the WIPO Standing Committee on the Law of Patents (SCP). The SCP elected Albert Tramposch, Administrator for Policy and External Affairs, USPTO as Chair.

Save the Date-17 May 2011-KEI @ WIPO Standing Committee on the Law of Patents: Patents and Health

Knowledge Ecology International: Patents and Health

DATE: Tuesday, 17 May 2011

TIME: 13:30-15h00

VENUE: Room B at the WIPO Main Building

Dramatic increase in waiting lists for AIDS Drug Assistance Programs, January 2010 to May 2011

ADAP waiting list AIDS Drug Assistance Programs (ADAP) are state run programs that provide medicines to low-income HIV-positive patients who either have limited or no insurance coverage. ADAPs are essential in providing life-saving medicines to low-income patients, but these programs are threatened by the high costs of treatment.

Dr. Balasubramaniam

On April 19, 2011, Dr Kumariah Balasubramaniam died at his home in Sri Lanka. Dr. Balasubramaniam, known to many as Dr. Bala, was described by Professor Colvin Gooneratne as "one of the most knowledgeable, resolute, articulate, versatile, resilient and in many other ways exceptionally brilliant health activists [the world] has produced." My tribute to Dr. Bala is in the Huffington Post. Prof.

IIPI side event at WIPO to present on a joint USPTO/IIPI project on "Missed Opportunities Patenting in Developing Countries"

The International Intellectual Property Institute (IIPI) is holding a side event at WIPO today on the margins of the WIPO Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP) on "Missed Opportunities for Patenting in Developing Countries" and "Innovation Opportunities in the Philippines".

The program flyer for the event notes that this initiative is a "joint project between the Intellectual Property Institute (IIPI) and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)."

Whither WHO reform? The future of the World Health Organization

On 11 March 2011, Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), convened an "informal advisory meeting" to review different approaches to "securing greater coherence in global health" and to further WHO's core function of "the directing and coordinating authority on international health work". A summary report of this informal advisory meeting and the WHO's background paper on "Global Health Governance and the WHO" can be found here: http://keionline.org/sites/default/files/WHOglobalhealthgovernancedraft.pdf

The USTR Special 301 Report, some initial reactions

The USTR Special 301 Report was issued today. The full report is here, the USTR web page on the report is here, and a link to the USTR press release about the report is here.

Senator Wyden releases redacted version of October 29, 2010 CRS report on ACTA

On April 26, 2011, Senator Wyden released a redacted version of the Congressional Research Service (CRS) report on ACTA that has been the subject to an ongoing Freedom of Information ACT (FOIA) dispute with USTR.

(More context here, here and here).

This is a link to the report that USTR claimed they could not release because of restrictions on its use by Senator Wyden.

http://keionline.org/sites/default/files/RedactedACTACRSMemotoSenWyden.pdf

Judge rejects USTR claim that negotiating position in FTAA investment chapter is exempt from FOIA

In a somewhat unexpected and encouraging ruling, on April 12, 2011, the District Court for the District of Columbia rejected USTR claims that the release of certain documents relating to a trade negotiations can be shielded from the FOIA.

The case involves a FOIA dispute between the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL) and the the United States Trade Representative's (USTR) over documents revealing the US negotiating position on the Investment Chapter in the proposed Free Trade Agreement of the Americas (FTAA).

Confirmation that Obama Administration was "lone hold out" for releasing bracketed ACTA text to the public in Summer of 2010.

On July 1, 2010, William Yue, the Senior Counsel, Office of the Chief Counsel for International Commerce at the US Department of Commerce, wrote to Joel Blank and John Cobau about the ACTA negotiations. John Cobau was the Chief Counsel for International Commerce at the U.S. Department of Commerce, and Joel Blank was International Attorney-Advisor at US Department of Commerce.

A redacted version of this email was the only document released to KEI as part of a larger FOIA request concerning the Department of Commerce role in the ACTA negotiations. A copy is available here:

Ambassador Kirk's responses to Senate Finance Committee suggests enforcement of TRIPS-plus data exclusivity measures

Recently, Ambassador Ron Kirk, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) responded to follow up questions from the U.S. Senate Finance Committee regarding the 2011 Trade Agenda. In addition to asserting that the U.S. Congress is not bound by ACTA, the responses suggest USTR desire to establish requirements for the implementation of data exclusivity provisions.

Six NGOs present recommendations for Moscow WHO forum on non-communicable diseases

Six NGOs, including Knowledge Ecology International (KEI), Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF), Oxfam, Third World Network (TWN), Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM), and Young Professionals Chronic Disease Network (YP-CDN), recently submitted recommendations to Member States to control non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in low- and middle-income countries in advance of the Moscow Ministerial conference.

A PDF of the joint statement with logos of the groups is available here:
http://keionline.org/sites/default/files/ncd-6healthngos-moscow.pdf

Homeland Security's 2008 letter to USTR: ACTA is a threat to national security

On August 7, 2008, Stewart Baker, the Assistant Secretary for Policy at the Department of Homeland Security, sent a one page letter and a three page "Policy Position on Border Measures of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement."

Stewart Baker was the General Counsel of the National Security Agency from 1992 to 1994, and was appointed the first Assistant Secretary for Policy at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) by George W Bush.

White House rejects administrative appeal on FOIA request for CRS study of ACTA

KEI just received the attached letter from the Executive Office of the President's Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) rejecting our appeal of USTRs decision to withhold a study by the Library of Congress' Congressional Research Service on ACTA that was done for Senator Wyden.

http://keionline.org/sites/default/files/USTR_20April2011_FOIA_APPEAL--CaseFile_no_10101455.pdf

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