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Archived Comments for: TRIPS, the Doha declaration and paragraph 6 decision: what are the remaining steps for protecting access to medicines?

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  1. Thai compulsory license (CL) not based on 31 (f) waiver

    Ellen 't Hoen, MSF

    19 June 2007

    The article mistakenly presents the compulsory licenses issued by the Thai governement as based on the WTO waiver of 31(f) also known as the August 30 decision or paragraph 6 solution. However the Thai government use licenses are straightforward article 31 licenses. There was no need for a waiver of the TRIPS provision that a CL is predominantly for the suply of the domestic market because the products Thailand is importing from India are not patent protected in India and can be freely shipped to a country that has issued a CL (or where patents are not in place). In the case Thailand will produce domestically it has fulfilled the requirement that a CL is predominantly for the domestic market and thus is there no need for a wauver. See for details of the Thai CLs:

    So far no country has ever made use of the 31(f) waiver. In the case of Taiwan it concerned domestic production in which case the waiver is irrelevant. These are common misunderstandings that unfortunately present the use of CL as more complex than the current TRIPS rules require.

    Competing interests