The TRIPS COVID-19 Waiver

In October 2020, India and South Africa jointly proposed that WTO-enforced intellectual property rights obligations related to patents, copyright, industrial designs, and clinical data should be suspended for the duration of the pandemic. This temporary initiative, called the TRIPS Waiver propsal, would help ensure a rapid, equitable and truly global public health response to COVID-19, which the current WTO intellectual property rights regime impedes. 

Despite enjoying widespread support from over 100 WTO member governments, debate about the waiver dragged on at the WTO's TRIPS Council through the summer of 2021. Canada claims it does not oppose the waiver, but it has not supported it either, which is contributing to the WTO deadlock. Global civil society organizations including the CCPA hope to convince all WTO member governments to agree to a comprehensive waiver as soon as possible and before the November WTO ministerial at the latest.

COVID-19 waiver resources