Generics could be labelled counterfeiters in Kenya
Kenya published Anti-Counterfeit Regulations on August 27, implementing the 2008 Anti-Counterfeit Act. How they affect the debate over generic medicines, however, will have to wait for a decision from the High Court. Until then, say John Syekei and Haanee Khan, generic manufacturers should beware the risk of being labelled counterfeiters
The Act's main reform is that it establishes an
Anti-Counterfeit Agency, which will coordinate the fight
against counterfeits across Kenya. However, the Act does not
provide civil remedies, so an aggrieved person must establish
infringement of IP law. It also fails to define
"counterfeiting" adequately, and permits the Kenyan authorities
to return counterfeit goods to their country of origin rather
than destroying them.
The Regulations now provide the mechanism for IP owners to
use the Act to enforce their rights. Owners have to submit the
particulars of their IP rights to the Agency, which will
maintain a database. The Agency can then use that information
to actively investigate and eliminate suspected counterfeit
practices. The Regulations also permit IP owners through their
agents to report suspected counterfeit goods to the Agency,
whose inspectors are empowered to search and seize any goods
that breach IP rights.
Impact on pharmaceuticals
The pharmaceutical industry...
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