Sir Elton's campaign for India's health industry
Sir Elton John is urging politicians to stop plans to restrict India's pharmaceutical industry, branding the proposals an "attack on the health of the world's poor".
European Union (E.U.) chiefs are set to meet with Indian health bosses on Friday to discuss how to strengthen the nation's trade, but many experts are worried new guidelines may restrict the country's ability to deliver medicines.
The Rocket Man star, who is a longtime supporter of AIDS charities, is unhappy about the situation and he wants government bosses to intervene.
In a piece for The Independent, he writes, "In a high-level summit in Delhi today officials from the E.U. will try to force India into accepting restrictions on its generic medicine industry that would mean delays of up to 10 years in delivery of generic versions of new, improved medicines and up to 15 years in the case of paediatric versions of the same drugs.
"This is an attack on the health of the world's poor motivated by the aggressive demands of profit-hungry multinational pharmaceutical companies. The British Government must step in and stop the E.U. attack. The U.K. has a proud record on international development and access to medicines...
"I've battled for many years to see progress in the Aids response. I don't want to see those achievements thrown away.
"This is a critical moment. The Government must stand up for the rights of people living with HIV and the health of the world's most vulnerable by stopping this EU attack on the vital Indian supply of essential medicines. We cannot allow Europe's greed to triumph over the needs of HIV patients around the world."