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Vol. 2 (2006)

Access To Medicines, Paragraph 6 Of The Doha Declaration On Public Health, And Developing Countries In International Treaty Negotiations

Daya Shanker

Paragraph 6 of the Doha Declaration on Public Health, dealing with access to medicines for countries lacking the manufacturing capacity for them, became an important issue because its solution on 30th August 2003 on the basis of the Note of the Chairman of the TRIPS Council was perceived as changing the basic features of the TRIPS Agreement. This was the subject of much debate, and a number of proposals from different countries were submitted either individually or collectively. However, the proposals from developing countries did not find their way into Paragraph 6, and the problem of developing countries not being able to make their voices heard in international negotiations is the focus of this article. By discussing the circumstances of the Paragraph Solution and the ways in which the interests of the developed countries were prioritised over the interests of developing countries, this article attempts to find ways in which the negotiating process may be made more transparent in future so as to accommodate all interests more fairly.


Lecturer in International Business, Bowater School of Management, Deakin University, Warrnambool, Australia; B.Sc. (Hon.) ’69, Patna University; M.Sc. ’72, Patna University; M.B.A. ’97, University of Wollongong; M.Com. (Hon.) ’98, University of Wollongong; Ph.D. ’04, University of Wollongong.

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