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Brevetabilité des médicament, innovation et l’avenir de l’industrie pharmaceutique en Tunisie DRUGS PATENTABILITY INNOVATION AND THE FUTURE OF THE PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY IN TUNISIA THEORETICAL STUDY AND EMPIRICAL VALIDATION

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  • Nejla YACOUB

    ()
    (Laboratoire de Recherche sur l'Industrie et l'Innovation. ULCO)

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    Abstract

    La signature en 1994 des accords sur les Aspects de Droits de la Propriété Intellectuelle qui touchent au Commerce (ADPIC) dans le cadre des négociations instituant l’Organisation Mondiale du Commerce (OMC), sont le fait le plus marquant de l’évolution de la brevetabilité. La brevetabilité des médicaments, reconnue en vertu des ADPIC dans tous les pays de l’OMC, a soulevé de nombreux débats, en particulier autour de son impact sur l’accessibilité des pays en développement (PED) aux médicaments. Son impact sur l’innovation pharmaceutique dans ces pays, demeure par contre peu exploré. Cette question, qui constitue la problématique de cette recherche, est pourtant d’acuité notamment dans un contexte actuel où nombre de PED, comme la Tunisie, s’attèlent à créer une base technologique et cognitive favorable à l’innovation pharmaceutique. Traiter de cette problématique, requiert d’abord une étude théorique des fondements de la brevetabilité (des médicaments) et de son impact sur l’innovation (pharmaceutique). Ensuite, pour tester empiriquement la validité des conclusions théoriques pour le cas de la Tunisie, nous avons mené une enquête qualitative auprès des 32 laboratoires composant l’industrie pharmaceutique tunisienne. Les résultats empiriques, appuyés par une analyse comparative avec quelques pays, montrent que, en l’état actuel, l’innovation pharmaceutique en Tunisie étant encore embryonnaire et fortement dépendante de l’étranger, la brevetabilité des médicaments se révèle comme une contrainte plutôt qu’une incitation à l’innovation locale. Tandis que, à long terme, l’impact dépendra de la capacité du système sectoriel d’innovation (SSI) tunisien à mettre en place des mécanismes en mesure de créer une dynamique de transferts technologiques et d’innovation, en particulier via la consolidation des interactions systémiques entre ses différents acteurs. The signature in 1994 of the Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights agreements (TRIPS) within the negotiations of the world trade organization (WTO) are the most notable fact of the evolution of patentability. Hence, drugs patentability, recognized within all the member countries of the WTO lifted up several debates in particular as regards the impact on the accessibility of developing countries to essential drugs. The impact of TRIPs on pharmaceutical innovation in developing countries remains, however, less explored. Yet, it is an up-to-date issue, especially in a current context where a growing number of developing countries, such as Tunisia, engage a policy aiming at enhancing their innovation potential in pharmaceuticals. Studying this issue requires first a theoretical analysis of the foundations of patentability and of its impacts on innovation. Then, in order to test the theoretical conclusions empirically, we conduct a survey next to the pharmaceuticals firms in Tunisia. The empirical results show that currently the pharmaceutical innovation in Tunisia is still at early stages of development and strongly relying on foreign technologies; the drugs patentability appears then as a constraint rather than an incentive. Nevertheless, on the long run, the impact will depend on the ability of the sectoral innovation system (SIS) to put into effect mechanisms that could create a dynamic of technology transfers and of innovation, especially through strengthening the systemic interactions between its different actors.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Laboratoire de Recherche sur l'Industrie et l'Innovation. ULCO / Research Unit on Industry and Innovation in its series Working Papers with number 248.

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    Length: 34 pages
    Date of creation: Feb 2012
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    Publication status: Published in Cahiers du Lab.RII, Février 2012
    Handle: RePEc:rii:riidoc:248

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    Keywords: Brevetabilité des médicaments; transferts de technologie; innovation pharmaceutique; industrie pharmaceutique tunisienne; système sectoriel d’innovation tunisien;

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