Washington Post

Biden commits to waiving vaccine patents, irking pharmaceutical companies

President Joe Biden. Foto: Washington Post/Melina Mara

WASHINGTON - The Biden administration on Wednesday threw its support behind a proposal to waive intellectual property protections for coronavirus vaccines, with liberals framing it as a necessary bid to speed the shots to billions of people in the developing world, while the drug industry warned of devastating effects to vaccine production.

U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai said the United States will move forward with international discussions to waive the protections for the duration of the pandemic. U.S. officials helped block a World Trade Organization proposal that was introduced last year to stop enforcing patents for coronavirus-related medical products. Dozens of developing countries have pushed for the proposal, saying it would allow them to rapidly produce their own generic vaccines, rather than wait months or years for sufficient doses...

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