Members of MSF-SA, TAC, Section 27 and He-Tic will picket at the Consulate General of India this Wednesday, 8th February to voice their concerns about the anti-public health policies being pushed on India by the European Union as part of a free trade agreement being discussed at the upcoming EU-India Summit in New Delhi on 10th February.
WHERE: Outside the Consulate General of India, No.1, Eton Road (Corner Jan Smuts Avenue & Eton Road), Parktown, Johannesburg
WHEN: 12h00 on Wednesday 8th February
WHY: India and the European Union are currently negotiating a free trade agreement (FTA) which includes provisions that could threaten production in India of affordable, high-quality generic medicines for HIV, cancer, mental illness, heart disease, and others.
Because of its strong generic pharmaceutical industry, India has long been considered "the pharmacy of the developing world”:
- Indian generics helped to bring down the price of anti-retrovirals (ARVs) from R5,000 in the 1990s to less than R100 a month today.
- 80% of people living with HIV and receiving treatment in developing countries use Indian generic ARVs.
- Over 90% of pediatric AIDS medicines are supplied by Indian generics.
Currently, the EU is pushing for India to adopt measures which could choke generic production in the country, potentially threatening access to medicines for millions of people worldwide.
Negotiations on the proposed India-EU FTA will culminate at the EU-India Summit, taking place in New Delhi on 10th February. At the Summit, the EU and India will finalise a political framework for the FTA, and both sides will announce their “trade-offs”. India must not give into pressure from EU to accept provisions that will restrict generic production and harm public health.
Feb 3-10 marks a GLOBAL week of action against the anti-public health proposals in the India-EU FTA. By picketing at the Indian embassy on Wed 8th Feb, TAC, MSF, Section27 and He-Tic will add their voices to those around the world who are sending a message to India and the EU that their lives are not for sale and cannot be traded away.
A related PRESS RELEASE will be issued on Wednesday AM 8th February.
For further information or to arrange interviews, please contact:
Kate Ribet, Communications Officer, MSF SA
firstname.lastname@example.org or 079 872 2950