Invitation to attend TAC and MSF workshop during the Peoples Health Assembly

When: 14:30 – 16:30, Sunday 8 July 2012

Where: Peoples Health Assembly, The University of the Western Cape (UWC), Room TBA

Attendance open to all registered participants of the PHA

During the 3rd Peoples Health Assembly, to be hosted in Cape Town from 6 – 11 July, the Treatment Action Campaign and Médecins Sans Frontières will look at the use of TRIPS flexibilities in key developing countries – South Africa, India and Brazil.

As members of the World Trade Organisation, South Africa, India and Brazil are all required to provide protection of intellectual property in line with the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). However, each country has flexibility under TRIPS to adopt provisions in their national law in order to balance the protection of health with the protection of intellectual property.

This workshop will compare how each country has interpreted TRIPS in its national legislation and how this has impacted on health and medicine access. Some of the features of each country’s patent laws that will be examined include: standards of patentability; examination and opposition procedures; and compulsory licensing provisions.

Additionally, we will look at the ongoing pressure faced by these countries not to use TRIPS flexibilities and how activists have fought back and, in some cases, won provisions in their law to protect health. The workshop will look at ongoing efforts of activists in these countries to improve medicine access by fully utilising flexibilities and the possibility for international collaboration and pressure.


 14:30 – 14:40

Welcome and short overview of TRIPS flexibilities

Speaker: Mara  Kardas-Nelson, MSF South Africa and MSF Access Campaign

14:40 – 15:00

India’s use of TRIPS flexibilities, backlash and ongoing activism

Speaker: Leena Menghaney, India campaigner for MSF Access Campaign

15:00 – 15:20

Brazil’s use of TRIPS flexibilities, backlash and ongoing activism

Speaker: Marcela Vieira, ABIA

15:20 – 15:40

South Africa’s use of TRIPS flexibilities

Speaker: Yousuf Vawda, Professor of Law at UKZN

15:40 – 15:50

Why now is a crucial time to amend South Africa’s laws and the development of an IP policy for South Africa.

Speaker: Catherine Tomlinson, Treatment Action Campaign

15:50 – 16:30

Questions and panel discussion with all speakers

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