KEI comments to WIPO SCP on constraints faced by countries in making full use of TRIPS flexibilities

On 8 December 2017, Knowledge Ecology International (KEI) submitted the following paper on “constraints faced by developing countries and least developed countries (LDCs) in making full use of patent flexibilities and their impacts” on access to medicines pursuant to the decision of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO) Standing Committee on the Law of Patents (SCP) at its twenty-sixth session (document SCP/26/7, paragraph 19, first bullet point under “Patents and Health”). 

This 21-page submission documents some notable examples of pressure brought to bear against countries who employed or contemplated using the flexibilities afforded to them under the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Protection (TRIPS). The paper provides examples from Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, India, Indonesia, Philippines, South Africa, and Thailand. 

The link to the KEI submission can be found here.

The agenda for WIPO SCP 27 can be found here.

The Committee, which meets from 11 December 2017 to 15 December 2017 will discuss the following subjects: 1) Report on the international patent system: Certain aspects of national/regional patent laws, 2) Exceptions and limitations to patent rights, 3) Patents and health, 4) Quality of patents, including opposition systems, 4) Confidentiality of communications between clients and their patent advisors, 5) Transfer of technology, and 6) Other issues: Informative session on legislative assistance in the field of patents and related capacity building.

Under patents and health,  on Tuesday, 12 December 2017, the Committee will convene a 1) Sharing session on patents and other related issues on access to medicines and 2) A half-day information exchange session on publicly accessible databases on patent information status and data on medicines and vaccines.

The WIPO secretariat has produced a summary document for the upcoming discussions on patents and health entitled, Constraints Faced by Developing Countries and Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in Making Full Use of Patent Flexibilities and their Impacts on Access to Affordable Especially Essential Medicines for Public Health Purposes in those Countries: Supplement to Document SCP/26/5. The link to this document can be found here.