European Union criticised for health policies towards developing countries

BMJ 2009; 339 doi: (Published 21 October 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;339:b4328
  1. Rory Watson
  1. 1Brussels

    The European Union has been accused this week of applying double standards, by trying to reduce the price of generic drugs within its own borders while preventing developing countries from enjoying the same benefits.

    The criticism is contained in a report published by Oxfam and Health Action International Europe on 20 October. The two organisations maintain that the EU is insisting on tough new intellectual property rights for the benefit of drug companies in the bilateral free trade agreements that it is negotiating with developing countries.

    This, they say, will lead to higher prices for drugs. Citing an accord between the EU …

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