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Thailand Says No to IP, Begs for Investment

Posted Oct 28 2008 9:56pm

Pharmalot is reporting that the military junta running Thailand will spend over $600,000 on a public relations image campaign to change its image. It seems they’ve realized that a military coup is not good for business investment.

Here’s a suggestion for Thailand—rather than spending over $600,000 on an image campaign, how about spending that money on directly helping the 500,000 Thais with HIV? I’m betting that $600,000 could buy an awful lot of condoms and prevention education.

As I mentioned in my BIO Annual Meeting Preview, I’m looking forward to the Sunday session at BIO titled “Thailand: Investment and Collaboration in Agricultural Development and Medical Innovation.” The description reads, “In support of biotech investment opportunities, Thailand provides excellent infrastructure, hands-on professionals, existing world-class research, government incentives and biodiversity.” I wonder if ‘government incentives’ is a euphemism for ‘violating your patents.’ One thing is for certain, Thailand will have a hard time luring biotech companies to the country by refusing to honor IP. However, I will enjoy watching the Thai envoy try to lure investment to the country.

Finally, a recent industry delegation is back from drug license negotiations in Thailand. Members reported that the Thai military junta sent armed observers to follow them. Were the military thugs there for protection or intimidation?

Looks like I won’t be going to Phuket in December after all.
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