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World COVID-19: In the wake of the American initiative, it moves on the patent front vaccines

16:25  06 may  2021
16:25  06 may  2021 Source:   rfi.fr

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Is it a turning point in the fight against the pandemic? Wednesday evening, the United States announce that they are favorable to the lifting of patents on Vaccines against CVIV-19. Brussels, Berlin and Paris have followed suit in Washington on Thursday and the African Union welcomes these developments. In concrete terms, it means that developing countries could produce Moderna or Pfizer without requesting the authorization of the manufacturers. But the pharmaceutical industry remains to be convinced.

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India and South Africa, demanded it for a long time. The United States last night supported their request . The American position for a lifting of patents on Anti-Covid vaccines is "a remarkable expression of leadership," said Thursday morning the director of the Continent Continement Control Control and Disease Prevention Center (Africa CDC), which depends on the African Union (AU).

to read also : The United States is favorable to the lifting of the rights on

vaccines and the reactions follow one another. This Thursday morning again is the European Commission also called "ready to discuss" a lifting of vaccine patents against CVIV-19 to accelerate production and distribution. "The EU is ready to discuss any proposal that would attack the crisis effectively and pragmatically. We are ready to discuss how the US proposal can achieve this objective, "said the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen.

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Germany has followed suit. Berlin is "open" to a "discussion" about patent lifting on Anti-Covid vaccines, envisaged by Washington, said Thursday the leader of German diplomacy Heiko Mas, adding, "it's a question that We must ask ourselves because it is about putting this pandemic "from Covid-19.

Not to be left out of France, by the voice of Emmanuel Macron, is positioned too. The head of state, which inaugurated a large vaccination door of Versailles on Thursday morning, "quite favorable to what is, indeed, this opening of the intellectual property, you heard me the say a year ago. What I said simply is that today our bottlenecks, making it difficult to access the vaccine, it will at some point the price and access to intellectual property, c Today is the transfer of technology and the ability to produce ... Yes, we must obviously make this vaccine a global public good. But for sure, the priority, today, is on two things: the spirit of solidarity and efficiency of all rich countries, like Europe does it and like, I hope, it will be followed by the British, Americans and others. It's donation doses. In the short term, that's what will allow us to vaccinate. »

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The highly reserved pharmaceutical industry

The measure has not yet been approved by the WTO , which the Director-General advocates for the development of" voluntary licensing "agreements for the manufacture of vaccines, as did Astrazeneca with the Serum Institute of India in India.

to read also : The question of vaccine patents divides the member countries of the WTO

but the US announcement took off the pharmaceutical industry, fiercely opposed to the suspension of the patents, reports our correspondent to Geneva, Jérémie Loche. The American proposal is a simple answer but a bad answer to the crisis. This is how the International Federation of the Pharmaceutical Industry reacted, IFPMA after Washington's announcement.

Its boss, Thomas Cueni, says that lifting patents will not increase the number of doses available. It would even be the opposite. "Lift the patent does not give you other doses, but gives a negative signal and will increase the problems. '

in front. The GAVI organization, the Vaccine Alliance, believes that the multiplication of production sites could be able to circumvent the blockages in exports. As is the case in India. Aurélia Nguyen is the head of the Gavi vaccine sharing program: "There is really an awareness, which is happening, on the need of the most affected countries. And to respond to this global health crisis, you really need to play on all possible measures that will remove vaccine supply constraints. "

The WTO must meet again, next month, on this file.

Vaccinate Adults in India Before American Children .
The imminent danger to people in global hot spots demands attention now, and the risk to kids in the U.S. is relatively modest.Allowing the export of doses would be not only effective vaccine diplomacy but also in Americans’ own interest. Gaining better control of the disease across the globe would prevent or slow the emergence of worrisome viral variants.

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