Timeline of privileges regarding the commercialization and use of knowledge. Part 3: 2000 and after

This is work in progress, and is part of a larger project on timelines. This particular timeline is unfinished, and may contain errors.

Timeline of privileged regarding the commercialization and use of knowledge

Timeline collection: Part 1: before 1980, Part 2: 1980 to 1999, and Part 3: 2000 and after, and specialized timelines.

Part 3: 2000 and after


  • 2002 February 8. Teleconference between Merck, GSK, Roche, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Boehringer and Pfizer.

    “A teleconference on Feb. 8 brought high-ranking officers of the six companies into the talks for the first time. Among them were Weg of Bristol-Myers; Glaxo Executive Director James Cochrane; Per Wold-Olsen, Merck president for Europe, Middle East and Africa; Pfizer Senior Vice President Ian C. Read; Boehringer corporate marketing director Riku Rautsola; and Roche’s global pharmaceutical chief, William M. Burns. To a man, they were frustrated. “We’ve got to get off the subject of prices!” Burns exploded, speaking from his headquarters in Basel, Switzerland. “Prices are not the issue.” At the first mention of prices, lawyers chimed in from speakerphones. They cautioned the executives to steer clear of price-setting, for fear of antitrust violations. But that was not where this conversation was going. Some of the participants, including Cochrane, wanted to take on the industry’s critics–above all Bernard Pecoul of the French medical aid group Doctors Without Borders, and James Love of the Consumer Project on Technology in Washington. According to participants, Jeffrey L. Sturchio of Merck and Glaxo’s Ben Plumley, public affairs specialists, said that would be a losing battle. The only way to turn perceptions around, Sturchio said, was “to make something affirmative happen,” including substantial price cuts. That view was not unanimous. Pfizer’s Read registered strong dissent, and Pfizer withdrew. Barton Gellman , A Turning Point That Left Millions Behind, Drug Discounts Benefit Few While Protecting Pharmaceutical Companies’ Profits, Washington Post Staff, December 28, 2000.

  • 2000 March. ACT UP New York begins a series of “zaps” on Pfizer over the price of Fluconazole. See ACT up NY stories here.
  • 2000 May 10. President Bill Clinton issues Executive Order 13155, on Access to HIV/AIDS Pharmaceuticals and Medical Technologies (65 FR 30521, May 12, 2000).
  • 2000 May 11. The Accelerating Access Initiative (AAI) was created as a partnership between UNAIDS, the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the UN Population Fund, the World Bank and seven research-based pharmaceutical companies (Abbott, Boehringer Ingelheim, Bristol-Myers Squibb, GlaxoSmithKline, Gilead Sciences, Merck & Co., Inc. and Roche). The point of the AAI effort was to blunt criticism over patents on AIDS drugs, at a time when the least expensive patented AIDS cocktail was selling for $10,000 in South Africa.
  • 2000 August. Meeting in London between Dr. Hamied if CIPLA, James Love, Bill Haddad, Rob Weissman and others, to discuss the cost of AIDS drugs. Dr. Hamied tells Love CIPLA could easily provide, at a profit, the combination of d4T+3TC+NVP at $350 per year, if the products were provided with solid financing, no marketing expenses, and without taxes.


  • 2001 February 6. Through a negotiation with CPTech, CIPLA formally agrees to sell the d4T+3TC+NVP AIDS cocktail for $350 per year to MSF. The New York Times reports the CIPLA offer on February 7, 2010.
  • 2001 March 5. South Africa trial (PMA v Nelson Mandela) begins.
  • 2001 March 12. Students at Yale press the University to end patent monopoly for d4T in South Africa.
  • 2001 April 8-11. WTO/WHO Meeting on Differential Pricing & Financing of Essential Drugs, Hosbjor, Norway.
  • 2001 April 19. The South Africa trial ends, as the PMA and its members withdraw the suit.
  • 2001 April 26. Kofi Annan calls for establishment of the Global Fund for AIDS, TB and malaria, an act that subsequently earns Annan the Nobel peace prize.
  • 2001 October 12. Intellectual Property, innovation and international trade agreements. Wizards of OS. Discussion of R&D Treaty.
  • 2001 November 14. WTO Doha Declaration on TRIPS and Public Health.
  • 2001 December 20. Can we create a global trade framework for health care R&D that puts patients first? Presented at the Fifth International Conference on Home and Community Care for Persons Living with HIV/AIDS. Chaing Mai, Thailand.


  • 2002 February 14. The Budapest Open Access Initiative was published.
  • 2002 May 15. Launch of Creative Commons.
  • 2002 March 28. Implementation of the Doha Declaration on the TRIPS agreement and Public Health, Technical assistance – How to get it right. International Conference Centre of Geneva (CICG), Switzerland. Sponored by MSF, CPTech, Oxfam and HAI.
  • 2002 July 8. An Essential Health Care Patent Pool is proposed at the Barcelona AIDS conference.
  • 2002 September. The WIPO General Assembly agrees to create the Advisory Committee on Enforcement (ACE)
  • 2002 September 18. Aventis scenario-planning exercise in Ottrott-le-Haut, on “Pharma Scenarios for Sustainable Healthcare.” In two “radical” scenarios proposed by Tim Hubbard and James Love describe a medical R&D treaty to replace mandatory IPR norms for addressing global free rider issues for medical R&D, as well as the use of a medical innovation prize fund to reward developers of new drugs, and competitive intermediaries to fund open source projects.
  • 2002. September 2002. Integrating Intellectual Property Rights and Development Policy, Report of the Commission on Intellectual Property Rights.
  • 2002 October 31-November 1. The Trans Atlantic Consumer Dialogue (TACD) Committee on Intellectual Property meeting on the Impact of Intellectual Property Rules on Consumers of Health Care Services. The final panel of the two day meeting focused on a possible medical R&D treaty.


  • 2003 January 15, 2003. In Eldred v. Ashcroft, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld legislation extending the term of copyright.
  • 2003 April 1. John Barton proposal for an International Science and Technology Treaty, presented at an ICTSD meeting in Geneva.
  • 2003 April 24-36. WIPO cancels proposed “Summit on Intellectual Property and the Knowledge Economy,” on grounds of SARS epidemic. The meeting is never rescheduled.
  • 2003 April 29. International Meeting on a global framework for supporting health research and development (R&D) in areas of market and public policy failure. The International Conference Centre of Geneva (CICG), Switzerland. Workshop hosted by the MSF Campaign for Access to Essential Medicines, Consumer Project on Technology, Oxfam International, Health Action International, and the Third World Network.
  • 2003 May 27. Agence nationale de recherches sur le sida/Institute d’ économie publique, Workshop on Economic issues related to access to HIV/AIDS care in developing countries, Université de la Méditerranée, Marseille, France.
  • 2003 July 7. Letter from 69 scientists and economists to Kamil Idris, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization. Requesting that WIPO host a meeting on open and collaborative development.
  • 2003 July 10. Declan Buttler article in Nature Magazine, “Drive for patent-free innovation gathers pace,” reports that WIPO DG Kamil Idris agrees to hold a meeting on open and collaborative development models.
  • 2003 July 22. EU adopts Council Regulation 1383/2003 of 22 July 2003 on customs action against goods suspected of infringing certain intellectual property rights and the measures to be taken against goods found to have infringed such rights
  • 2003 August 21. Jonathan Krim report in the Washington Post, “The Quiet War Over Open Source,” that USPTO opposes the WIPO meeting on open and collaborative development models. Says WIPO’s mandate is only to promote higher intellectual property norms.
  • 2003 August 30. WTO Agreement of 30 August 2003 on the implementation of Paragraph 6 of the Doha Declaration on TRIPS and Public Health.
  • 2003 October 16. The South Africa Competition Commission issued a press release in the TAC/Hazel Tau case, annoucing it had found GlaxoSmithKline and Boehringer Ingelheim to have contravened the RSA Competition Act, by (1) denying a competitor access to an essential facility, (2) excessive pricing and (3) engaging in an exclusionary act.
  • 2003 October 17. TACD meeting in Lison. The WIPO Work Program
  • 2003 October 20-22. Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities.
  • 2003 December 4. Workshop on Access To Medicines And The Financing Of Innovations In Health Care, hosted by the Earth Institute at Columbia University and the Consumer Project on Technology. A New Trade Framework for Global Healthcare R&D


  • 2004 April 5. TACD meeting at Ford Foundation in NYC, on Global Access to Essential Learning Tools
  • 2004 April 6. KEI coins term, a2k, to brand the “Access to Knowledge” movement.
  • 2004 April 29. EU Directive 2004/48/EC of 29 April 2004 on enforcement of intellectual property rights.
  • 2004 May 25-26. First Global Congress to Combat Counterfeiting. Brussels, at WCO.
  • 2004 July 29. NIH denies Essential Invention’s Norvir (ritonavir) march-in petition.
  • 2004 August 27. Proposal By Argentina And Brazil For The Establishment Of A Development Agenda For WIPO (WO/GA/31/11)
  • 2004 September 13-14. TACD meeting in Geneva: The Future of WIPO
  • 2004 September 17. NIH denies Essential Inventions Xalatan (latanoprost) march-in petitition.
  • 2004 November 2. WIPO SCCR/12/3. Proposal By Chile On The Subject “Exceptions And Limitations To
    Copyright And Related Rights”


  • 2005 February 3-5. Experts Meeting on the WIPO Development Agenda and a Treaty on Access to Knowledge. Co-hosted by CPTech, TWN and IFLA.
  • 2005 February 24. Letter of 162 experts asking World Health Organization to evaluate a proposed treaty framework for medical research and development.
  • 2005 May 12-13. TACD Conference on Access to Knowledge, considers draft A2K Treaty.
  • 2005 June 3. APEC trade ministers endorse Anti-Counterfeiting and Piracy Initiative.
  • 2005 June 25. World Custom Organization adopts Framework of Standards To Secure and Facilitate Global Trade. (SECURE)
  • 2005 July 8. G8 resolution, “Reducing IPR Piracy and Counterfeiting through more Effective Enforcement,” at the Gleneagles Summit.
  • 2005 July 12. Proposal for European Union (EU) directive on criminal measures aimed at ensuring the enforcement of intellectual property rights (IPRED2).
  • 2005 October 12. G8 Experts meeting on counterfeiting and piracy.
  • 2005 November 14-15. Interpol, World Customs Organization (WCO), WIPO and the Global Congress Steering Group host Second Global COngress on Combating Counterfeiting and Piracy, in Lyon, France.
  • 2005 November 21-13. The Delegation of Chile elaborated its proposal for copyright limitations and exceptions in SCCR 13/5. specifying three areas of work to be undertaken in the SCCR.


  • 2006 February 18. The International Medical Products Anti-Counterfeiting Taskforce (IMPACT) was established.
  • 2006 May 15. In eBay v. Mercexchange, L. L. C., the U.S. Supreme Court held that counts must consider the possibility of a compulsory license on an intellectual property right as an alternative to the granting of an injunction.
  • 2006 June 19-20. First TACD meeting on the Paris Accord.
  • 2006 November 29. Efavirenz CL, in Thailand.
  • 2006 December 6. The Gowers Review of Intellectual Property was published in the UK.


  • 2007 January 25. CL for antihypertension drug clopidogrel. Thailand.
  • 2007 January 29. Lopinavir+ritonavir CL, in Thailand.
  • 2007 April 3. The Anti-Counterfeit Bill of 2007 is introduced in the Kenya parliament.
  • 2007 April 10. In the WTO, the U.S. files formal request for consultations with China over enforcement of intellectual property rights, in WT/DS362/R.
  • 2007 April 25. Brazil Minister of Health José Gomes Temporão signed Decree 866, which approved a compulsory license for the patent on Efavirenz.
  • 2007 May 24. The Sixtieth World Health Assembly adopts WHA60.30, on “Public health, innovation and intellectual property.” Among other things, the resolution calls for “the development of proposals for health-needs driven research and development for discussion at the Intergovernmental Working Group that includes a range of incentive mechanisms including also addressing the linkage between the cost of research and development and the price of medicines, vaccines, diagnostic kits and other health-care products.”
  • 2007 September. WIPO General Assembly formally adopts the 45 recommendations of the WIPO Development Agenda.
  • 2007 October 23. The United States, the European Community, Switzerland and Japan simultaneously announce they will negotiate ACTA


  • 2008 May 24. The Sixty-First World Health Assembly formally adopts WHA61.21, The Global strategy and plan of action on public health, innovation and intellectual property
  • 2008 June 3-4. First official meeting of ACTA negotiators.
  • 2008 July. the UNITAID Executive Board decided, in principle, to establish a voluntary patent pool for medicines. The initial focus of the Patent Pool will be on increasing access to newer antiretroviral medicines (ARVs) and encouraging the development of adapted formulations.
  • 2008 July 24-25, 2008. The World Blind Union and KEI convene expert group to draft a possible treaty for blind, visually impaired and other reading disabled persons. The meeting was held in Washington, DC.
  • 2008 September 25. Council of the European Union. Council Resolution on a comprehensive European anti-counterfeiting and anti-piracy plan, 2891st COMPETITIVENESS, (INTERNAL MARKET, INDUSTRY and RESEARCH) Council meeting, Brussels, 25 September 2008. The European Commission is asked to set up a European Observatory on Counterfeiting and Piracy.
  • 2008 October 13. President Bush signs legislation creating U.S. “piracy czar.”
  • 2008 October. Google announces settlement of of lawsuit over Google Books. The proposed settlement would cover tens of millions of out of print books.
  • December 26, 2008. Congress enacts an appropriates bill that includes a mandate for open access to research funded by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH).


  • 2009 February 10. Stan McCoy of USTR’s “Transparency Soup” memo proposes measures to limit the transparency of the ACTA negotiation.
  • 2009 March 5. President Obama, PhRMA CEO Billy Tauzin, Pfizer CEO Jeff Kindler, and others meet to discuss drug industry support for Obama’s health care bill.
  • 2009 March 10. Obama White House denies FOIA request proposed text for ACTA, claiming the documents are “information that is properly classified in the interest of national security pursuant to Executive Order 12958.”
  • 2009 April 2. European Commission launches the European Observatory on Counterfeiting and Piracy.
  • 2009 May 25. Brazil, Ecuador and Paraguay table (SCCR/18/5) in the WIPO SCCR. Proposal By Brazil, Ecuador And Paraguay, Relating To Limitations And Exceptions: Treaty Proposed By The World Blind Union (WBU)
  • 2009 June 29-30. TACD’s The Paris Accord II.
  • 2009 September 9. USPTO and Pfizer hold a joint workshop in India to promote exclusive rights for pharmaceutical test data.
  • 2009 September 11. The European Commission adopts a Communication on Enhancing the enforcement of intellectual property rights in the internal market.
  • 2009 December 1. KEI and IQSensato WTO side event on Proposal for a WTO Agreement on the Supply of Public goods


  • 2010 January 13. The European Parliament Draft Report on enhancing the enforcement of intellectual property rights in the internal market was issued, by the Committee on Legal Affairs Rapporteur Marielle Gallo.
  • 2010 March 10. By a vote of 633 to 13, the EU Parliament demanded that the text of ACTA be disclosed to the public, and that the substance be more sensitive to civil liberties and consumer protections.
  • 2010, March 23. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Public Law 111–148. Created a new pathway for registration of biosimilar drugs, 12 years of test data protection, and compulsory licensing of non-disclosed patents.
  • 2010 May 21. The World Health Organization (WHO) agreed to the establishment of a new consultative expert working group on research and development: financing and coordination (WHA63.28).

Other Relevant Timelines

Timeline collection: Part 1: before 1980, Part 2: 1980 to 1999, and Part 3: 2000 and after, and specialized timelines.
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