Press release from the Aussie government. Ironic in that this was announced almost at the very moment the Canadian attempt to improve its own Access to Medicines Regime was being delayedto the 4th power and killed.
Innovation Minister Senator Kim Carr and Trade Minister Dr Craig Emerson today announced that the Government would introduce legislation to allow Australian courts to grant compulsory licences to manufacture and export patented pharmaceuticals to countries trying to deal with epidemics and other types of health crises. […]
The new system implements an international agreement on public health in the World Trade Organization, amending the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (the TRIPS Protocol).
Developing countries and other interested organisations will now be able to apply to the Federal Court for a licence to manufacture and export patented pharmaceuticals from Australia to countries in need.
The Government is aiming to have the new system in place by the end of 2011.