Brazil Senate votes to release licenses for Covid-19 vaccines

(Prensa Latina) Brazilian Senate will vote on Wednesday on a bill to break patents for anti-Covid-19 vaccines without complying with industrial property rights while the state of health emergency is in force.

The Brazil Agency indicated that such a license breakdown during the pandemic is included in a bill made by Senator Paulo Paim.

The text read that, during the health emergency, the production of Covid-19 vaccine doses and supplies must be released, without respecting industrial property rights.

To this end, the initiative suspends Brazil’s obligations to implement or apply the provisions of the Agreement on Market-related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, adopted by the General Council of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The measure does not imply ignoring patent rights, but temporarily relativizing them based on a greater interest.

‘The purpose is to produce the vaccine on a large scale and at low cost. We need population to be vaccinated swiftly. We are talking about millions of doses. Brazil could also help poor countries, as requested by WTO,’ said Paim.

Paim claimed that over 100 nations have not even received the first dose. ‘We are talking about 2.5 billion (people). It is a humanitarian matter. It is saving lives,’ he said.

Brazil, which has about 212 million inhabitants, began on January 17 a slow vaccination campaign in line with health collapse, due to lack of supplies and oxygen in the state of Amazonas (northwest).

To date, 9.46% of the Brazilian population (20,023,132) were vaccinated with the first dose, while 2.64% (5,595,929) with the second one.

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