Pfizer CEO calls vaccine patent waiver push ‘so wrong’: Report

The push for technology sharing comes as India faces a grave surge in virus cases and deaths

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla struck back at proponents of waiving intellectual property protections for COVID-19 vaccine technology this week, which now includes the Biden administration.

Opponents in the pharmaceutical industry – including those like Bourla involved in making the vaccines approved for emergency use in the U.S. – say that removing protections will not speed up distribution and could instead cause trouble within supply chains.

"It’s so wrong," Bourla told The Wall Street Journal earlier this week, indicating that technology sharing would not increase production.

Republicans in Congress argued in a letter to the administration that the move would discourage innovation without addressing the true roadblocks to access in developing countries.

US SUPPORTS WAIVING IP PROTECTIONS FOR CORONAVIRUS VACCINE

Shares of Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson fell during Thursday’s trading session.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
PFE PFIZER INC. 39.42 +0.61 +1.57%
MRNA MODERNA, INC. 208.24 +9.05 +4.54%
JNJ JOHNSON & JOHNSON 163.89 +1.78 +1.10%

A spokesperson for Pfizer did not return FOX Business' request for comment.

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When asked on Wednesday whether his administration was going to support the waiver proposed by the World Trade Organization, Biden said "yes".

The idea is to free up the formulas so that they can be replicated by companies in other countries to help their vaccination efforts by increasing the availability of vaccines.

"The Administration believes strongly in intellectual property protections, but in service of ending this pandemic, supports the waiver of those protections for COVID-19 vaccines," U.S. Trade Representative Ambassador Katherine Tai said in a statement on Wednesday. "As our vaccine supply for the American people is secured, the Administration will continue to ramp up its efforts — working with the private sector and all possible partners — to expand vaccine manufacturing and distribution."

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle penned an open letter to pharmaceutical companies asking them to end their opposition to a temporary suspension of legal protections. 

Further – in honor of their son’s birthday this week – the pair asked people to donate to a fund to promote vaccine equity.

The push for technology sharing comes as India faces a grave surge in virus cases and deaths.