Actas - Consejo de los ADPIC - Ver detalles de la intervención/declaración

Ambassador Mero (United Republic of Tanzania)
6 Review under Paragraph 8 of the Decision on the Implementation of Paragraph 6 of the Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health
157. Providing access to medicines to populations in need is one of the key priorities of our Government. Canada is a global leader in supporting partnerships such as the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, the Global Drug Facility, and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, which strengthen health systems and provide targeted programming to increase access to medicines and vaccines. 158. Canada hosted the Fifth Replenishment Conference of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria in Montreal on 16-17 September 2016. Canada pledged $804 million, for 2017 to 2019, to the Global Fund, an increase of 23% over its previous commitment of $650 million for 2014-2016. Canada is the 6th largest donor to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, having pledged $520 million for the 2016-2020 period bringing Canada's contribution to over $1 billion since 2002. 159. In addition, Canada has introduced tax incentives for donations of medicines to developing countries. The Government of Canada's Donations of Medicine Eligibility Program ensures that only Canadian charities with sufficient expertise can participate in this scheme. 160. Canada's Access to Medicines Regime (CAMR), which implements Paragraph 6 of the Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health, is another measure Canada uses to promote access to medicines. Canada continues to believe that CAMR is a useful and effective tool to enhance access to medicines in the specific circumstances the System was designed to address. Last year, Canada amended the list of medications covered by CAMR to add three new antiretroviral drugs. Canada notified this amendment to the TRIPS Council in June 2016. 161. I mention all of these programmes to illustrate that the Government of Canada takes a holistic approach to promoting access to medicines. Our view is that only by addressing all of the factors affecting access to medicines can we end the tragedy of people suffering from treatable illnesses. 162. To this end, Canada is open to having a discussion of how best to promote access to medicines that considers all relevant factors. We would caution against treating certain factors, such as IP rights, in isolation, as doing so would risk overlooking effective tools to promote access. Canada looks forward learning more about the views of other Members on this issue, including with respect to Member experiences, challenges, and other considerations. 163. We consider it essential that the Protocol Amending the TRJPS Agreement be brought into force as soon as possible. We are only a handful of countries away from that goal and Canada urges all Members who have not already done so to accept the Protocol without delay.
The Council so agreed.

25. The Chairman said that Paragraph 8 of the Decision required the Council to review the functioning of the System annually, with a view to ensuring its effective operation. The Council was also required to report annually on its operation to the General Council. This review was deemed to fulfil the requirements of Article IX:4 of the WTO Agreement.

26. He suggested that the Council start with an exchange of views between Members about the functioning of the System. He encouraged Members to engage in a constructive discussion which could usefully build on the records of earlier reviews which continued to provide a unique and valuable resource for understanding this important measure. The reviews in 2010 and 2011 had taken the form of a structured debate on the basis of lists of topics for the discussion that had been agreed in advance. The General Council's Aide Mémoire circulated on 20 February 2015 (WT/GC/W/696) was also a useful resource; it set out the expected benefits of the Paragraph 6 System and provided a model instrument of acceptance.

27. After that discussion, the Council could then consider the report to the General Council. A draft cover note modelled on previous years' reports had been circulated as JOB/IP/18.

28. The Chairman updated the Council on the status of acceptances of the Protocol Amending the TRIPS Amendment (WT/L/641). The current period for accepting the Protocol ran until 31 December 2017. Fifteen instruments of acceptance had been deposited in 2016, including instruments from Papua New Guinea, Peru, and Belize since the Council's meeting in June 2016. All Members that had notified their acceptance were listed in the cover note of the draft report prepared by the WTO Secretariat, as well as the dedicated WTO webpage that was regularly updated. Only five more instruments of acceptance were needed to trigger entry into force.

29. He strongly encouraged those Members who were yet to complete their acceptance procedures to do as soon as possible. His call upon these Members echoed the multiple efforts Director General Azevêdo and his predecessors had made since 2015 to secure the entry into force of the Protocol. The Director-General in his contacts regularly emphasized that this was not only a priority for the WTO, but represented a concrete contribution that WTO Members could make to global efforts to strengthen the legal framework for access to medicines. Providing the necessary legal certainty for the export of much needed medicines through the permanent incorporation of the Paragraph 6 System into the TRIPS Agreement would, in particular, also respond to many calls for its timely implementation and entry into force that emanated from the multilateral system, including most recently the Political Declaration on HIV and AIDS that had been adopted by the UN General Assembly in June 2016.

30. He invited the WTO Secretariat to update the Council on the Paragraph 6 System, including on capacity building and on the process of acceptance.

31. The representative of the Secretariat took the floor.

32. The representatives of India, Brazil, Canada, Bangladesh, South Africa, the European Union, Australia, Japan, Chinese Taipei, Switzerland, the United States and Panama took the floor.

33. The Council took note of the statements made.

34. Turning to the Council's report to the General Council, the Chairman said that the Secretariat had prepared a draft cover note for the report which was modelled on previous years' reports and had been circulated as JOB/IP/18. It contained factual information on the implementation and use of the System, and the status of acceptances of the amendment Protocol. As for past reports, an extract from the Council's minutes on this agenda item might be attached to the cover note.

35. The Chairman proposed that the Council agree on the cover note to the report contained in JOB/IP/18 and also that the Council minutes containing the record of the discussion be attached to it.

36. The Council so agreed.

IP/C/M/83, IP/C/M/83/Add.1