Report Released at IP Global Congress Warns of ACTA's Potential Impact on Access to Medicines

International Participants to Deliberate Report, Other IP Concerns



Contact: Megan Smith, Public Relations Coordinator, 202-895-4537

WASHINGTON, DC, August 25, 2011 -- The opening session of the Global Congress on Intellectual Property and the Public Interest was held at American University Washington College of Law on Thursday, August 25, 2011, where a draft report on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) and the public interest commissioned by the EU Parliament Green Party was released.

The report specifically addresses the threats to public access to medicines posed by ACTA. Sean Flynn, associate director of the law school’s Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property (PIJIP), authored the draft which outlines two central arguments against the proposed agreement.

“First, the secretive nature of the ACTA negotiation process undermined the ability for stakeholders—consumers, patients, and average citizens—to participate in the drafting of this agreement,” says Flynn. “Further, ACTA’s provisions require or encourage member countries to raise IP enforcement standards on medicines. This includes developing countries. So, parts of this agreement only keep a small group of commercial interests in mind, yet could negatively impact public health worldwide.”

During the Global Congress from Aug. 25-27, 2011, experts and advocates working on international IP issues will share research, ideas, and policy proposals for how international IP law can better protect global public interest concerns. The EU’s considerations of ACTA as well as U.S. involvement in the upcoming Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are topics of discussion in addition to the contents of the report.

The draft report can be viewed online, and will be open for public comment for 30 days. Comments can also be sent to the publicly archived mailing list.

For more information or for media inquiries, please contact Megan Smith ( Highlights and information about the Global Congress can be found on American University Washington College of Law’s Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property website.

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American University Washington College of Law

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