India asks BRICS nations to use flexibilities under TRIPS for increased accessibility to medicines

Thursday, May 22, 2014

India has urged other members of the BRICS nations (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) to use flexibilities and safeguards under TRIPS like compulsory licencing and parallel imports to push down the prices and increase accessibility to medicines.

Addressing a meeting of the BRICS countries alongside the World Health Assembly in Geneva recently, additional secretary in the union health ministry, C K Mishra called for maintaining balance between IP use for the development of new healthcare products and public interest.

India suggested that the countries should use flexibilities like compulsory licenses, parallel imports, provisions allowing for early entry of generics and adoption of strict patentability criteria, according to reports reaching here.

Accessibility has been the “driving force” of health policy, and reducing costs a priority for India, with initiatives for the distribution of free drugs and promotion of generic production, he said.

Mishra urged “developing countries should consider revising national IP legislation” to include these flexibilities. He also warned against countermeasures adopted in “TRIPS-plus” bilateral trade agreements and investor states disputes, and asked international organisations and civil society to “actively advocate much more in support of national governments in use of all these flexibilities.”

Source: Pharmabiz (link opens in a new window)

Health Care