The United States Trade Representative, Katherine Tai has held a virtual meeting with the leadership at AstraZeneca and Pfizer to discuss increasing vaccine production and a proposed waiver to certain provisions of the WTO’s agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) for the COVID-19 pandemic.
The United States has remained non-committal on the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) move of India and South Africa over this. As per reports the White House has not made any decision to support the move at WTO to provide TRIPS waiver on covid-19 vaccines.
The Indian-American Congressman Ro Khanna said, “As the US approaches vaccinating population, we cannot simply stand by as over a 100 countries struggle to vaccinate theirs. We must push Pfizer and Moderna to offer licensing to the rest of the world so they can develop vaccines and advocate a TRIPS waiver at the WTO.”
Reiterating that the Biden-Harris administration’s top priority is saving lives and ending the pandemic here at home and around the world, Tai expressed her deep sympathy for the people of India.
The United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai met both the leaders of Pfizer, AstraZeneca, separately in a virtual set up to discuss increasing vaccine production, global health issues, and the proposed waiver to certain provisions of the WTO’s Agreement on TRIPS for the COVID-19 pandemic.
The proposal to temporarily waive off the WTO’s intellectual property rules was put forward by South Africa and India in October, and will be a focus at the body’s meeting early next month.
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