October 18, 2013 11:23 ET

Canada's research-based pharmaceutical companies welcome the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA)

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Oct. 18, 2013) - Canada's Research-Based Pharmaceutical Companies (Rx&D) applauds the Government of Canada's announcement today regarding the successful conclusion of negotiations surrounding the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).

"This is an historic agreement for Canada and an essential step in strengthening Canada's position on the international life sciences stage," said Russell Williams, President of Rx&D. "A more level playing field in intellectual property protection can lead to more investment in the research and development of new medicines and vaccines here at home. It is a catalyst for innovation, and that's good for Canada, but most importantly, it offers hope to Canadian patients and their families who rely upon the discovery of new and better medicines to help battle serious health challenges."

The life sciences intellectual property improvements included in CETA are:

Patent Term Restoration will offer research-based pharmaceutical companies the potential to recover up to two years of time lost on their patent as a result of lengthy regulatory and government approval processes. Canada is the only G7 nation that does not provide any form of patent term restoration.
The Right of Appeal will allow research-based pharmaceutical companies to more effectively appeal court decisions where a patent is ruled invalid, a process that has been available to challengers but not to patent-owners to date. Rx&D has maintained that regardless of the initial court decision, equal appeal rights for both parties are vital for a fair judicial system.

"We are pleased that the Government of Canada recognizes the role the innovative pharmaceutical industry plays in Canada's health, social and economic well-being," added Mr. Williams. "These steps to improve intellectual property protection will help drive investment, support high-paying jobs, lead to an improved healthcare system and better health outcomes for Canadians. We look forward to ongoing collaboration with the Government of Canada to continue to build a stronger, more competitive Canada."

About Rx&D

Rx&D is the association of leading research-based pharmaceutical companies dedicated to improving the health of Canadians through the discovery and development of new medicines and vaccines. Our community represents the men and women working for more than 50 member companies which invest more than $1 billion in research and development each year to fuel Canada's knowledge-based economy, contributing over $3 billion to the Canadian economy. Guided by our Code of Ethical Practices, our membership is committed to working in partnership with governments, private payers, healthcare professionals and stakeholders in a highly ethical manner.

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