AUC Welcomes USA’s Decision for Waiver of Intellectual Property Rights for COVID-19 Vaccines

Addis Ababa, May 07, 2021 (Walta) – The Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC), Moussa Faki Mahamat welcomed the announcement of the United States of America to support South Africa and India’s call for the temporary waiver of intellectual property protections for COVID-19 vaccines at the World Trade Organization.

The US administration on Thursday declared its support for waiving intellectual property rights, including patents, for COVID-19 vaccines.

The Chairperson of AUC commended the decision which is expected to help tackle this global public health crisis.

“The Chairperson commends this important show of global leadership by the United States of America, alongside more than 100 countries, to help end the most devastating global public health crisis in living memory, by supporting South Africa and India-led proposal to temporarily suspend rules on intellectual property rights on COVID-19 vaccines”, AU said in a statement.

The Chairperson further urged all countries that have not yet done so, to urgently support this historic initiative of multilateral cooperation to ensure equitable vaccine protection for the entire global community.

WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has also praised the commitment by the US administration to support the temporary waiver of intellectual property on COVID-19 vaccines in a bold move to end the pandemic as quickly as possible.

According to the Conversation, suspending patents and other intellectual property rights relevant to pharmaceuticals will remove legal barriers, allowing vaccine developers to enter the market more quickly without worrying about the prospect of litigation over potential infringements of intellectual property rights.

It will also mean vaccines manufactured in one country can be exported to others without having to navigate a legal maze.

 

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