Canada to Export Generic Antiretrovirals Produced Under Compulsory License to Rwanda
After Five Years, the August 30, 2003 Decision of the General Council of the WTO Poised to Lead to the Export of Medicines
The WTO's Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health reaffirmed Member nations' right to implement TRIPS "in a manner supportive of WTO Members' right to protect public health and, in particular, to promote access to medicines for all." However, it left open the question of when Member nations could export pharmaceuticals that were produced under compulsory license. In the August 30, 2003 Decision of the General Council, WTO Members formally approved such exports, as long as certain procedures were followed by both exporters and importers. At the time of the Decision, many health advocates warned that the rules it set up were overly cumbersome and would lead to problems in implementation. To date, no company has exported any medicine under the rules imposed by the Decision. However, Canadian legislation to allow their generic firms to export such medicines was passed in 2004, and in May 2008, Rwanda ordered a 3-in-1 fixed dose combination first-line antiretroviral therapy from the Canadian firm Apotex.
Apotex Press Releases
- "Canadian Company Receives Final Tender Approval from Rwanda for Vital AIDS Drug." (May 7, 2008).
- "Life Saving AIDS Drug for Africa Gets Final Clearance." (September 20, 2007).
Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network Documents
- Press Release. "Canada Finally Poised to Deliver on Promise of Affordable Medicines to Developing Countries?" (May 7, 2008).
- Brief to the Parliamentary Committee Reviewing Canada's Access to Medicines Regime. "Getting the Regime Right." (April 2007).
- Decision of the General Council of August 30, 2003 on the Implementation of paragraph 6 of the Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health.
- Doha Declaration on the TRIPS Agreement and Public Health.
- Notifications by WTO Members Importing Drugs Produced Under Compulsory License.
- Notifications by WTO Members Exporting Drugs Produced Under Compulsory License.