GENEVA (Reuters) – The four main parties to negotiate on an intellectual property waiver for COVID-19 vaccines have prepared an “outcome document” for approval by the broader membership, the WTO said on Tuesday, with its chief hoping for a final deal by June.
WTO director-general Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala has been working for months to broker a compromise between the United States, the European Union, India and South Africa to break an 18-month-long impasse.
“What the discussions were aiming at was coming up with something workable,” Okonjo-Iweala told Reuters, saying she hoped the WTO’s 164 members would agree to the draft deal by a major conference in June. “For the next pandemic or a flare up of this one, this is hugely important,” she said.
(Reporting by Emma Farge; Editing by Catherine Evans)