Through the World Trade Organisation an agreement was reached in November 2015 for the world’s poorest countries to buy –- and for drug manufacturers to produce or import –- generic medicines without breaching patent rules until January 1 2033. The decision was taken by the organisation’s Council for Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).
Put simply, the need of a nation trumped the right to derive protected benefit from a patent. This initiative will help developing countries come up with better policies. It will provide legal certainty, which should lead to better access and more affordable drug prices.