The International Trade Commission (ITC) conducted an all-day hearing today featuring a range of stakeholders with interests in the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) pending decision on extending what has come to be known as the TRIPS [Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights] waiver from strictly COVID-19 vaccine technologies to COVID-19 related therapeutics and diagnostics. The initial agreement on waiver came in June of last year and left most of those at the table unhappy. The decision presently applies only to “ingredients and processes necessary for the manufacture of the COVID-19 vaccine” and contemplates extending that to therapeutics and diagnostics no later than six months after the date of the decision, which would have been December 17, 2022. However, that was delayed in December amid concerns there wasn’t enough information to make an informed decision on extension.
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