Get rid of provisions in pact that will hit public health, TPP negotiators told

03 Sep 2014 / 03:28 H.

    SINGAPORE: Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has called on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiating countries to struck off provisions in the free trade agreement that will severely impact public health of millions of people in Asia.
    The TPP negotiators are now in Hanoi, Vietnam, from today to Sept 10, 2014 to begin the talks.
    Rohit Malpani, Director of Policy and Analysis, MSF Access Campaign, said negotiators would be under pressure to hammer out the final parts of the TPP agreement.
    "Even so, their most critical task is not concluding the agreement, but to ensure that provisions that would severely impact on the health of millions of people across the Asia-Pacific region are taken out of the final text," he said.
    Rohit said the US government was pressing to push through a broad variety of demands, including for countries to implement data exclusivity and patent evergreening provisions for medicines, which would be disastrous for people and for treatment providers like MSF who rely on access to affordable drugs.
    "These US negotiating demands, which are patent abuse in its purest form, would allow multinational pharmaceutical companies to extend patents and other monopolies on drugs beyond the 20 years already required by international law, which is a huge worry, as this will delay access to low-cost generic medicines," he said.
    TPP member countries are Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, the US, Vietnam and Singapore. – Bernama

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