Access versus TRIPs

The 1990s were marked by the battle for the TRIPs campaign i.e. Trade-Related Intellectual Property, driven by big industrial groups, especially pharmaceuticals who argued for the protection of Intellectual Property under the slogan “Patents = Profits = Research = Cure”. Because of the AIDS/HIV epidemic and its expensive treatment, NGOs all over the world started campaigning against TRIPs under the motto “Copy = life”. They were successful as in 2001, the Doha Declaration stated that TRIPs should not prevent states from dealing with public health crisis, and thus permitting them to copy drugs to make generics.


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