“Access Licensing”: A COVID-19 Refresh for Compulsory Licensing
In these extraordinary times of the pandemic, unusual steps must be taken to protect the public interest. On March 25, 2020, the Government of Canada’s sweeping COVID-19 Emergency Response Act received royal assent. Among its many measures is a compulsory licensing clause for patents that enables the Government “to make, construct, use and sell a patented invention to the extent necessary to respond to a public health emergency that is a matter of national concern.” This suspension of patent rights is not to be without recompense for the patent holder, but that, too, was framed in unusual ways on behalf of the public interest: “The Government of Canada… shall pay the patentee any amount that the Commissioner [of Patents] considers to be adequate remuneration in the circumstances, taking into account the economic value of the authorization and the extent to which they make, construct, use and sell the patented invention.”
Read the full article on Slaw, Canada’s online legal magazine.