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EU deal threatens HIV drug supplies

Author: Andrew Wander, Al Jazeera, Published on: 4 November 2010

[Medical experts warn that] an international trade agreement being brokered between the European Union and India...could leave millions of HIV sufferers in developing world without the drugs they need to stay alive. The charity Medicins sans Frontieres (MSF) says that hidden clauses in the free trade agreeement (FTA) currently being negotiated between Europe and India will prevent the manufacture and distribution of crucial generic medicines produced in the country...The issue hinges on a so-called "data exclusivity" provision in the free trade agreement, which campaigners say would effectively copyright information gathered in the clinical trials that prove the effectiveness and safety of medicines...The EU has held meetings and other exchanges with a range of stakeholders, including representatives of the pharmaceutical industry. Campaigners fear that the EU is now effectively negotiating with India on behalf of its pharmaceutical industry.

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