Bangladesh opposes WHO draft resolution
Adviser to Prime Minister Syed Modasser Ali stressed the need for ensuring quality, safety and efficacy of medicines to protect public health, says a press release.
The country will continue to participate in World Health Organisation (WHO) initiatives to address the public health problems posed by sub-standard, spurious and falsely labelled medical products, he added.
The adviser made these points while addressing the ongoing 124th Session of the Executive Board Meeting of WHO in Geneva.
Modasser said it would be unacceptable to Bangladesh to introduce issues relating to intellectual property infringements or trademark violations under the pretext of combating “counterfeit” medical products.
Such misplaced attempts, going beyond the mandates of WHO, would affect the supply of generic drugs in developing countries and harm their pharmaceutical industries.
The adviser's firm position in this regard led to the rejection of the WHO report and draft resolution on the issue of 'counterfeit medical products' placed for the board's consideration.
Bangladesh is a member on the 34-member WHO Executive Board for 2008-11.
It was widely apprehended that the controversial draft resolution would have had adverse implications for the growth of pharmaceutical industries in the country.
The debate over the WHO report on 'counterfeit' medical products was generated by the activities and recommendations made by the International Medical Products Anti-Counterfeit Taskforce (IMPACT) within the WHO Secretariat.
Syed Modasser Ali questioned the legitimacy of IMPACT as it was not duly endorsed by WHO members, saying that the IMPACT definition of 'counterfeits' could also include legally produced generic drugs.
The WHO director general assured the membership that a new report on this matter would be submitted to the next World Health Assembly in Geneva in May this year.