In "Brazil, EU Collaborate On Local Production Of AIDS Drugs In Mozambique", published on Monday in the excellent IP Watch, Claudia Jurberg describes an unusual and potentially invaluable exercise in life-saving tech transfer exercise between two Portuguese-speaking nations, Brazil and Mozambique. This article features Brazilian support for the establishment of a pharmaceutical plant in Maputo that will produce HIV/AIDS drugs such as antiretrovirals (ARVs). Claudia reports:
"The project has been developing in Mozambique since July 2005 under a partnership between the Mozambique Health Ministry and Farmanguinhos, the unit of the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation (Portuguese abbreviation Fiocruz) that produces medicines.
Fiocruz is one of the biggest public health institutions in Latin America and is dedicated - in addition to the production of drugs - to vaccines and kits to diagnose diseases. It also is responsible for the training of human resources for the public health system.
... [T]he plant in Africa will be inaugurated in the first semester of 2009 and is expected to begin production in the same year. The plant will produce ARVs and drugs against malaria and other diseases. The factory location is being adapted for the necessary equipment. The project is not expected to result in medicines being shipped to Brazil, but rather is intended to represent a commitment to helping Africa.
The investment is aimed at advancing science and technology in Mozambique, lessening economic dependence and, specifically in this case, dependence on the development of ARVs. Currently, they are purchased from other countries at higher costs".