Europe offers alternative to US-backed proposal to waive COVID vaccine property rights, saying its plan would spur innovation and help developing countries

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Credit: Dado Ruvic/Reuters
Credit: Dado Ruvic/Reuters

The European Union is pushing back hard against U.S.-backed calls to temporarily waive intellectual property rights for Covid-19 vaccines, preparing a rival plan that officials said would better safeguard drug companies’ patents and look for other ways to boost supplies for developing countries.

As the gap between vaccine haves and have-nots has widened, Washington and China have endorsed a proposal by developing countries at the World Trade Organization to suspend patent protections for the immunizations.

Brussels’ alternative plan would lift export restrictions on vaccines and their raw materials, expand manufacturing capacity around the world, and make it easier for countries to use existing rules to override patents in some cases, according to documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

The EU’s stance makes a quick deal on the waiver proposal less likely, and could sink it altogether, trade experts say.

Follow the latest news and policy debates on agricultural biotech and biomedicine? Subscribe to our newsletter.

[The EU argues] that removing patents won’t do much to help increase production in the short term and would remove incentives for pharmaceutical companies to do further work, such as updating vaccines for virus mutations.

“The rules-based global trading system can contribute to ensure a rapid expansion of production and equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines and therapeutics,” says the draft of the EU plan.

Read the original post

Related article:  Rival COVID vaccine developers issue joint pledge they will not seek government approval until immunizations proven ‘safe and effective’
Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
GLP Podcasts
Infographic: Trending green and going great — Every state in the US seeing decreased cases of COVID

Infographic: Trending green and going great — Every state in the US seeing decreased cases of COVID

The U.S. averaged fewer than 40,000 new cases per day over the past week. That’s a 21% improvement over the ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

* indicates required
Email Lists