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FRIDAY, September 30, 2022
Thailand joins battle to lift patent protection on Covid vaccines

Thailand joins battle to lift patent protection on Covid vaccines

MONDAY, June 07, 2021

Commerce Minister Jurin Laksanawisit on Sunday called for the lifting of intellectual property protection on Covid-19 vaccines, so countries can start producing shots for their people.

He made the remark during a virtual meeting with trade ministers from Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) countries.

At the meeting, Jurin said:

• Thailand will help with the transportation of vaccines and other essential goods required in the battle against Covid-19.

• Thailand will comply with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) pact to facilitate trading.

• Thailand will start its mass vaccine rollout as soon as possible and will be ready to provide support to other countries seeking vaccines.

• Thailand supports compulsory licensing, which enables countries to start producing Covid-19 vaccines without seeking permission from the patent owner. Thailand will also push for Covid-19 vaccines to be removed from intellectual property protection lists as per the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (Trips) agreement.

• Thailand backs WTO’s move to accelerate negotiations on vaccine production with the World Health Organisation.

• Thailand backs the WTO in seeking a conclusion on many pending issues, such as support in the fishing industry, temporary exemption of e-commerce tax and promotion of agricultural products.

Apec, meanwhile, said the following:

• A trade mechanism to tackle the Covid-19 outbreak, multilateral free trade and pathway to sustainability is required.

• The setting up of a Covid-19 vaccine supply chain to facilitate the trade of vaccines and essential goods is necessary.

• Support on trade and transportation of essential goods is required.