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South Africa Dispute over Parallel Imports of Pharmaceutical Drugs

  Re:	CPT on South Africa Dispute over Parallel Imports of 
          Pharmaceutical Drugs
  On Monday, October 6, 1997, the South African government's Portfolio
  Committee on Health held hearings on proposed legislation to enhance
  competition for pharmaceutical drugs.  The South African government has
  proposed an aggressive program which features the promotion of generic
  drugs, and which eliminates barriers to parallel imports of
  pharmaceuticals.  The pharmaceutical industry and the United States
  government has lobbied against several features of the legislation. 
  CPT's comments were supportive of the South African government's
  proposals, and focused mostly on the issue of parallel importing of
  pharmaceutical drugs, plus a brief discussion of the dispute over
  protections for health registration data.
  The CPT comments concern two controversial areas of international law
  concerning intellectual property.  Pharmaceutical companies are seeking
  to prohibit cross border trade in pharmaceuticals by asserting that such
  trade violates patent and trademark protections.  CPT effectively
  rebutted the industry's claims international law, and provided empirical
  evidence of benefits of parallel imports for HIV drugs.  CPT also
  briefly responded to pharmaceutical companies assertions that
  international law requires regulatory barriers to the use of scientific
  data about pharmaceutical drug safety and efficacy -- making it more
  difficult for the introduction of generic drugs.  
  CPT comments are on the web at: 
  If anyone needs a fax copy, please send me a note.   
  James Love
  Consumer Project on Technology
  James Love | Center for Study of Responsive Law
  P.O. Box 19367 | Washington, DC 20036 | http://www.cptech.org
  voice 202.387.8030 | fax 202.234.5176 | love@cptech.org