Policy Discussions and International Organizations

WTO Updates Joint Indicative List of Critical COVID-19 Vaccine Inputs

The WTO Secretariat has updated the joint indicative list compiling information on critical inputs for the manufacturing, distributing and administering of COVID-19 vaccines. The revised version incorporates feedback from industry and includes information on new critical inputs that have been identified.

The “Joint Indicative List of Critical COVID-19 Vaccine Inputs for Consultation” can be found here.

 

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Online Seminar on the Intellectual Property Gender Gap in the European Region

Inclusive innovation ecosystems are a priority for Innovation Council. It is for this reason that we have collaborated with WIPO and Invent Together on preparing these high-level policy panels that will take place on May 31 and June 1.

The event will focus on the importance of designing policies addressing the IP gender gap and engaging women’s participation in the innovation ecosystems of the European region.

Click here for online registration.

 

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Innovation Council to take part in WIPO, IFPMA World IP Day discussion

Innovation Council’s Jennifer Brant will join other stakeholders from the global IP community to discuss the challenges faced by young, female innovators in the health sector and to offer suggestions as to how the community can best support their endeavours. To participate, register here. 

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A Covid vaccine breakthrough bypasses the stale debate on patent waivers 

Heated debates have taken place at the WTO TRIPS Council over Covid-19 vaccine patents and IP rights, with ongoing discussions still taking place among diplomats from the US, India, South Africa, and the EU. For vaccine researchers, manufacturers, and public experts, though, the focus may have moved on some time ago, says Alan Beattie in a new “trade secrets” posting for the FT. Governments seem also to be shifting focus to emphasize practical efforts to extend  manufacturing and distribution capacity globally; by way of example, the EU recently announced a €1bn contribution to finance the German company BioNTech to set up a mobile vaccine manufacturing plant in Africa assembled from kits.

Read the full story. 

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Center for Global Development series on the EU-Africa Summit

On February 17th, the long-awaited summit between the African Union (AU) and the European Union (EU), delayed since 2020, finally began. But in the time since the first event was scheduled, the world was ravaged by a pandemic that is estimated to have stalled a decade of continuous growth and human capital improvement on the African continent.

The Center for Global Development prepared an excellent series on the EU-Africa Summit consisting of mini reports by CGD experts about the various joint priorities set out by the AU and the EU. The series offers compelling analysis and commentary on the actions needed in order for a meaningful reconstruction of the relationship between the two continents to materialize. 

Find the series here.

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What’s at stake in COVID-19 jab patent waiver row

Over a year into global COVID-19 vaccination efforts, the question of whether jab formulas ought to be freely available is still unresolved—and undersupplied countries are turning to workarounds.

Here’s a look at the waiver row, with arguments for and against as well as workarounds that have sprung up in the meantime.

Read more.

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Pharma industry calls for stronger IP protection in free trade agreements

Amid global criticism for holding on to vaccine patents during the pandemic, a new study commissioned by the European pharmaceuticals industry claims that integrating stronger intellectual property protection into free trade agreements would benefit the EU economy.

According to this study, the pharmaceutical industry is the most IP-intensive industry in Europe, followed by the ICT and electronics sector. Trademarks, copyrights, patents, and geographical indications were considered as the relevant IP categories in the study.

 

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Experts discuss IP commercialisation, barriers to domestic innovation at 4th Annual IP Dialogue

Experts and Participants discussed support for intellectual property (IP) commercialization, challenges in fighting the global pandemic, barriers to domestic innovation, and the “next generation” of IP policy discussions in the digital economy at the 4th Annual IP Dialogue.

The US Chamber of Commerce’s Global Innovation Policy Center (GIPC) and US India Business Council, in partnership with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), virtually convened government and industry leaders for the final session of its 4th annual IP Dialogue. Although the global pandemic continues to affect millions, this year’s dialogue proved to be incredibly impactful, with IP playing such a key role in efforts to study and combat the ongoing global pandemic.

Read the full story.

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EU Commission puts forward declaration on digital rights and principles

The European Commission is proposing to the European Parliament and Council to sign up to a declaration of rights and principles that will guide the digital transformation in the EU.

The draft declaration on digital rights and principles aims to give everyone a clear reference point about the kind of digital transformation Europe promotes and defends. It will also provide a guide for policy makers and companies when dealing with new technologies. The rights and freedoms enshrined in the EU’s legal framework, and the European values expressed by the principles, should be respected online as they are offline. Once jointly endorsed, the Declaration will also define the approach to the digital transformation which the EU will promote throughout the world.

Read the full story.

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