Proposal At WTO To Waive Intellectual Property Rights To COVID-19 Technologies Not In World’s Best Interest, Paper Argues
Cato Institute: An Unnecessary Proposal: A WTO Waiver of Intellectual Property Rights for COVID-19 Vaccines
James Bacchus, distinguished university professor of global affairs and director of the Center for Global Economic and Environmental Opportunity at the University of Central Florida and adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute, discusses a proposal at the World Trade Organization to waive intellectual property rights for COVID-19 technologies, writing, “Their waiver request raises anew the recurring debate within the WTO over the right balance between the protection of IP rights and access in poorer countries to urgently needed medicines. But the last thing the WTO needs is another debate over perceived trade obstacles to public health. … A new and contentious ‘North‐South’ political struggle definitely would not be in the interest of the developed countries, the developing countries, the pharmaceutical companies, or the WTO. Certainly it would not be in the interest of the victims and potential victims of COVID-19…” (12/16).