SA and India press for IP waiver for Covid-19 drugs at WTO
SA and India argued in favour of a waiver of intellectual property (IP) rights on COVID-19 drugs and vaccines at a closed-door meeting of the World Trade Organization (WTO) on January 18, reported Reuters.
Proponents of the temporary waiver say that IP rules are hindering the urgent scale-up of Covid-19 vaccine production amid growing criticism of the inequitable distribution of shots. The waiver's critics include the EU, the US and Switzerland, all home to major pharmaceutical companies.
Meanwhile the EU wants to set up a mechanism that would allow the sharing of surplus Covid-19 vaccines with poorer neighbouring states and Africa.