Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA)
13 September 2002
NEW UK INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY COMMISSION REPORT ADDS LITTLE TO DEBATE, SAYS PHRMA
A new report by the Commission on Intellectual Property Rights, an independent group advising the United Kingdom's Secretary of State for International Development, sheds little new light on the challenges facing developing countries in seeking to meet the real public health needs of their citizens or achieving their economic development goals, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) said today. " By embracing a 'one-size fits all' approach to intellectual property rights for the developing world, the report fails to provide any prescriptions that will help patients, " said PhRMA Senior Vice President, International Affairs, Shannon S.S. Herzfeld. "The Commission began with a false premise - that intellectual property protection impedes economic development efforts and forces a transfer of wealth from poor nations to the rich. Clearly this is at odds with mainstream economic theory."
Our industry operates on the front lines, Herzfeld explained. The public-private partnerships between research-based pharmaceutical companies and developing countries are helping bring needed modern medicines to patients throughout the developing world.
"The greatest barriers to better health in those countries are poverty, ignorance, corruption and neglect. Through partnerships, we are working to overcome those obstacles," she said.
"Countries at every stage of development benefit from protecting the intellectual capital of their people, " said Herzfeld. "No part of the world has a monopoly on good ideas. Intellectual property rights insure that the benefits of a novel idea flow to the inventors, no matter where they might live. Respect for intellectual property rights helps developing countries build their economies and improve public health for their people."
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