Press Releases

Press Releases

WTO Heeds Manufacturers’ Warnings; Industry Appreciates Biden and Tai’s Leadership

Washington, D.C. – Following the completion of the 13th World Trade Organization ministerial meeting in Abu Dhabi, at which WTO members chose not to expand the agreement on the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights waiver to include diagnostics and therapeutics, National Association of Manufacturers President and CEO Jay Timmons released the following statement:

“Global leaders at the WTO heard manufacturers’ stark warnings that an expansion of the TRIPS waiver would have endangered manufacturers’ fundamental ability to fight global crises, including COVID-19. Granting this waiver also would have emboldened our global competitors, chipped away at American innovation and jeopardized our ability to fight future diseases. After years of NAM advocacy, this decision represents a major victory for manufacturers—particularly those hard at work developing lifesaving cures and treatments. We appreciate President Biden and Ambassador Tai’s leadership to secure this outcome.”

The NAM led advocacy efforts to alert policymakers to the danger of an expanded TRIPS waiver, weighing in directly with the Biden administration, members of Congress, foreign governments and business organizations and urging Washington to stand with manufacturers. Timmons also took this message directly to WTO Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala during a March 2023 meeting in Geneva, Switzerland.

“Another welcome action was WTO members’ decision to expand the moratorium on e-commerce tariffs,” Timmons added. “The e-commerce moratorium has enabled the digital economy to flourish, and the NAM urges U.S. trade officials to push for permanently instituting the moratorium at the WTO, so that this critical element of digital commerce doesn’t come with an expiration date.”


The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs nearly 13 million men and women, contributes $2.85 trillion to the U.S. economy annually and accounts for 53% of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the NAM or to follow us on Twitter and Facebook, please visit

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