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Sunday, 15 January 2006


The Houston Chronicle reports that, following a three-day meeting in Brasillia, nineteen Latin American countries have said that they will act en bloc to lower the price of AIDS medication. The countries also announced that they would cooperate in investing and exchanging information in order to begin production of AIDS drugs themselves.

Pedro Chequer, the head of Brazil's AIDS program, said

“It's fundamental the countries unite ... to build effective mechanisms to produce medication locally…The sole negotiation of price reduction won't guarantee sustainability in the long term."
Previously, Brazil has caused drug companies to lower the price of their drugs by threatening to infringe patents.

The IPKat reckons that negotiation over pricing is probably the most effective approach all round, but failing that, there are exceptions in the TRIPs Agreement allowing production of drugs in emergency situations.

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