What’s behind the delay to temporarily waive patent protections on COVID-19 vaccines?

Tuesday, May 4, 2021 - 4:00pm


As India experiences its deadliest coronavirus surge yet, there is growing pressure on the World Trade Organization to temporarily waive intellectual property rights for COVID-19 vaccines. That would allow other countries to produce the vaccine and distribute more to less-wealthy countries. The US has not supported the idea, but now the White House says US Trade Representative Katherine Tai will hold talks with the WTO on how to adjust license and manufacturing issues to get the COVID-19 vaccine more widely distributed and shared. Marco Werman speaks with Thiru Balasubramaniam, Geneva Representative of Knowledge Ecology International (KEI), a nongovernmental organization that focuses on the effects of intellectual property on public health, cyberlaw and e-commerce.