Minutes - TRIPS Council - View details of the intervention/statement

Ambassador Eduardo Pérez Motta (Mexico)
Bolivia, Plurinational State of
C.i Scope and coverage
46. The representative of Bolivia said that there seemed to be a consensus among all WTO Members that a flexible, viable and transparent system that provided legal certainty should be developed. The differences arose on the manner in which to reach such a solution. The debate was not on positions but on the most appropriate solution that would help developing countries and other Members of the WTO. He said that the two main solutions proposed in this regard were interpretations under Article 30 or under Article 31. Bolivia was of the opinion that an authoritative interpretation under Article 30 was the one that was likely to cause the least difficulty and cost to developing countries. In this respect his country had co-sponsored the proposal made by Brazil on behalf of a number of developing countries. He said that it was not desirable to have a list of diseases drawn up to limit product coverage. When a country faced a public health crisis or other situation of national emergency, it should have access to all pharmaceutical products needed, that it could not itself manufacture, to tackle it. It was possible that diseases which were once thought to be eradicated at times came back, and, hence, drawing up a list of diseases was inappropriate. 47. With respect to beneficiary importing countries, he said that every developing country that was facing a public health crisis should be able to benefit from the solution. In this respect, he said that he would like to hear more from the United States delegation on the factors it thought appropriate in order to identify countries that could benefit from the solution. As an initial response to the proposal of Switzerland, he said that he was interested in the self-assessment suggested but would like to hear more about the proposed criteria on which such assessment was to take place. As to supplying Members, he said that what was being discussed were serious public health problems not questions of market access. The universe of potential supplying Members should not be limited and every WTO Member that could help to deal with the public health problems should be able to do so.