WASHINGTON – United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai today sent a letter to the United States International Trade Commission (USITC) requesting an investigation and public report of available data and information regarding access to COVID-19 diagnostics and therapeutics. Ambassador Tai also requested that the Commission solicit comments from the public and hold a hearing, encouraging foreign governments, health advocates, and diagnostic and therapeutic manufacturers to participate.
The USITC investigation would provide information on market dynamics as World Trade Organization (WTO) Members consider whether to extend the June 17, 2022 Ministerial Decision on the TRIPS Agreement to COVID-19 diagnostics and therapeutics. In her request to the USITC, Ambassador Tai emphasized the longstanding concern over inequitable global access to medicines and therapeutics. Ambassador Tai also recognizes the need for transparency so that interested parties have a common set of facts and views to consider.
As part of the Administration’s comprehensive effort to combat the pandemic, USTR has supported negotiations that resulted in the WTO issuing the Ministerial Decision on the TRIPS Agreement. Additionally, USTR has completed robust consultations with Congress, government experts, stakeholders, multilateral institutions, and WTO Members.
Ambassador Tai’s letter to the USITC can be viewed on the USTR website.