Peru – Social Protests Against TPP on the Rise

  • February 3, 2016
  • News

Protestas en peruOn January 8, student groups called “Las Zonas” undertook several activities in different cities under the “TPP: Agreement of Death” slogan, to inform people about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) that would be signed on February 4 in New Zealand.

These groups formed picket lines in front of hospitals, public places and markets to make people know about the TPP, since very few know that Peru is part of this trade agreement and its consequences.

Demonstrations are performed simultaneously in Chiclayo, Arequipa, Ucayali, and Iquitos, and on January 22 a march will take place in Peru and Chile.

Javier Llamoza, representative of Health Action International (HAI), says “the work done in Peru is not unique; civil society organizations in Chile, Canada and The United States also say: ‘NO to TPP’. We hope the decision won’t be approved”.

Only 8 of the 19 proposals submitted by the Government address the review of the trade agreements, implementation of compulsory licenses to monopolized drugs and generic drugs policies.

Ana Romero Cano, executive coordinator of the RedGE organization, hopes the TPP “won’t be signed”. She claims that an analysis of who wins or loses with the free trade agreements, in order to define what to do with those affected, has not been done.

“There are very dangerous chapters in the TPP, such as those that address health and access to medication, that are detrimental to us”, Romero argues. She mentioned that in past negotiations eight years of test data for biological drugs were waived, which created a monopolized market.

On the other hand, civil society sued the Ministry of Health so it informs about the implementation of a compulsory license to the drug Reyatz (atazanavir) from Bristol Mayers Squibb, which sells it 14 times more expensive that the generic version sold in Bolivia.

The Specialized Permanent Court for Contentious Administrative Proceedings of the Superior Court of Justice of Lima found in favor of the Peruvian Network for Patients and Users, HAI, RedGE, Givar, PROSA; the NGO “Sí, da vida”, and ForoSalud, on December 12, given 10 days to the Ministry of Health to give the information requested.

People begin to understand and voice their discontent on the streets at an agreement that for years was negotiated behind closed doors.