Remarks Announcing the AIDS Research Patent Rights Agreement Between France and the United States

March 31, 1987

The President. Prime Minister Chirac and I are pleased to announce today an agreement that will foster international cooperative efforts in research, education, and the exchange of technology dedicated to the eradication of AIDS. An agreement has been reached between the Department of Health and Human Services and the Institut Pasteur which resolves the differences between the two over the patent rights for the AIDS antibody test kit. The two medical groups will share the patent, and each party will contribute 80 percent of the royalties received to establish and support an international AIDS research foundation. This foundation, which will also raise private funds, will sponsor AIDS-related research and will donate 25 percent of the funds that they receive to education and research of AIDS problems in less developed countries.

This agreement opens a new era in Franco-American cooperation, allowing France and the United States to join their efforts to control this terrible disease in the hopes of speeding the development of an AIDS vaccine or cure. So, Mr. Prime Minister, Dr. Bowen, and Dr. Dedonder, we thank you all, and I hope this is just one of the many cooperative efforts between our two countries in the years ahead.

Jacques?

The Prime Minister. Well, the President said what should be said. I just want to add how glad I am about this agreement to fight against this terrific disease. We in the United States and France have very, very good and efficient scientists, and they will now work together and also create a foundation to fight against AIDS. And it's, I think, a great step to be successful in this very important battle. And I'm very glad about it, and I thank very much the Department of Health of the United States and L'Institut Pasteur de Paris for all that they have done.

Note: The President spoke at 11:49 a.m. in the East Room at the White House. Among those present were Secretary of Health and Human Services Otis R. Bowen and Dr. Raymond Dedonder, director of the L'Institut Pasteur in Paris.