Influencing IP policymaking in Southern Africa

Influencing IP policymaking in Southern Africa

Project

This project aims to train grassroots organisations for people living with HIV in Botswana, Mauritius and Zimbabwe how to lobby on Intellectual Property (IP) issues. The focus is to achieve better IP laws and pricing transparency and to raise awareness about the consequences created by IP barriers. By building a bridge between grassroots organisations and policy makers, they can work together to influence IP policy.

Project details

Time frame
30 December 2014 - 29 December 2017
Budget
€ 120,000
Active in
Botswana, Mauritius, Zimbabwe

Objectives

The ultimate outcome from this 3-year programme will be an improved access to new TB, MDR and XDR-TB, Hepatitis C and HIV treatment for people living with HIV by addressing intellectual property (IP) barriers

Background

The AIDS and Rights Alliance for Southern Africa (ARASA) is a regional partnership of more than 70 non-governmental organizations working together to promote a human-rights based response to HIV and TB in Africa. The program serves to inform a strong and informed civil society access movement in the SADC region, through regional civil society consensus building and advocacy targeting key policy makers, such as the SADC Heads of States.

Access to medicines within the SADC region remains an issue of immense concern. A total of 6.3 million people were receiving ART in 2012, in a region, which currently accounts for 65% of the 9.7 million people receiving ART globally. Despite the significant progress in the scale-up of ART in the region, another 2.9 million people (including 0.87 million children) who were eligible for ART in 2011 were not yet receiving it. About 85% of the generic ARV medicines used in the region are imported from India and only 15% are manufactured within the SADC region. Access to medicines is a complex issue in Southern Africa. Lack of competition due to prohibitive intellectual property laws is one important contributing factor. Other contributing factors include: • Insufficient national investment in fighting HIV, TB and Hepatitis C; • Lack of transparency on the actual prices spent on these medicines; • Inefficiencies in procurement due to country-by-country negotiations with pharmaceutical companies; • Ineffective and inefficient regulatory approval procedures, leading to delays in registering generic medications; and • Out-dated medicines and IP laws

Goals

Everyone living with HIV worldwide receives treatment
100%
Contributed within this project

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