Colombia Ministry of Health Announces that Negotiations With Novartis Have Failed; Declaration of Public Interest Imminent

Reports have emerged from a DNDi meeting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, that the Colombian Ministry of Health announced that negotiations with Novartis over the price of Glivec have failed, and that Minister Alejandro Gaviria will proceed with the formal declaration that a compulsory license for the patents on the drug is in the public interest.

As explained in KEI’s FAQ/backgrounder on this issue, the public interest declaration is a technical requirement under Colombia Decree 4302 of 2008, and is a critical step toward the compulsory license. Under Article 7 of that Decree, the completion of the declaration then moves to the Superintendencia de Industria y Comercio (SIC) for processing.

If the Declaration is made, it will remain to be seen whether the SIC will make the compulsory license a pro forma matter, or whether they will obstruct the process further. On March 30th of this year, José Luis Londoño Fernández, the Superintendente Delegado para la Propiedad Industrial (head of IP), drafted a statement in opposition to the recommendations of the technical committee on this matter.

Update. This from today:
Professor Claudia Vaca on Colombia’s Potential Compulsory License for Gleevec