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BIO Statement on Reports of a Proposed Deal on COVID-19 Vaccine IP Rights Waiver

March 16, 2022
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John Murphy, Chief Policy Officer at the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO), released the following statement regarding reports of a proposed deal on a Covid-19 vaccine intellectual property rights waiver:

“While we have seen the reported outlines of an alleged compromise on the TRIPS waiver, we still need to see and review the full text before rendering a final judgment.  However, the irrational fixation on weakening IP is simply a distraction from the real challenge of overcoming global vaccine hesitancy, removing actual trade barriers, and helping countries to strengthen their healthcare infrastructure so that we can get more shots in arms.  In 2021 alone, companies produced more than 11 billion doses of COVID vaccines, enough to give two shots to every adult on the planet.

“Strong, predictable intellectual property protections are what allowed biopharma companies to produce COVID vaccines and therapeutics in record time. It laid the foundation for cross-border partnerships, global scientific collaboration, and an unprecedented manufacturing scale-up that ensured vaccines could reach every corner of the world.  Dismantling the foundation of innovation—a strong and predictable IP system—will only make us less prepared to respond to the next pandemic and weaken our ability to develop new classes of medicines the world needs.”

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