Pharmaceuticals, Intellectual Property and Free Trade: The Case of the US-Australia Free Trade Agreement

Peter Drahos, Buddhima Lokuge, Thomas Faunce, Thomas Faunce, Martyn Goddard, David A Henry

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Australia did poorly in several key areas of the recently completed free trade agreement with the US. It failed to insulate the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) from significant change, and conceded to increased intellectual property standards. The PBS, as a system of effective bargaining with multinational pharmaceutical firms, has been deeply compromised and higher drug prices can be expected over time. The intellectual property chapter strengthens the position of patent owners and undermines the evolution of a competitive generics industry. These developments are part of a broader and internationally coordinated strategy being pursued by pharmaceutical multinationals to globalize and strengthen patent rights and monopoly profits.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)243-257
    JournalPrometheus
    Volume22
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2004

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