This month global trade ministers held talks at the World Trade Organization for the first time in five years. As the conference spilled into a sixth day, an agreement was finally reached to waiver Covid-19 patents (the TRIPS waiver).
This deal temporarily removes intellectual property barriers around patents for Covid-19 vaccines and postpones the discussions on extending the waiver to treatments and tests by six months. But it has been heavily criticised for watering down the original text proposed by India and South Africa.
So what benefit will it really have? This episode assesses the impact of the deal and asks what other action is needed to respond to this pandemic and prepare for future ones.