Switzerland to Thailand: Drop Dead

On February 25, 2008, the Swiss government wrote a letter (copy here) to the Thai government, objecting to the use of compulsory licenses to obtain affordable cancer drugs in Thailand. (details here). The Swiss actions are closely coordinated with actions of the European Commission and the United States government. It is particularly appalling to us that Switzerland, one of the highest income countries in the world, would pressure Thailand on this issue after having promised, in 2001, that developing countries could use compulsory licenses to promote access to all.

Here are some comparisons of the two countries.
Indicator Thailand Switzerland
Gross National Income (GNI) $193.7 billion $425.9 billion
Population 67.7 million 7.4 million
GNI per capita annually $2,990 $57,230
GNI per capita daily $8.19 $156.79
Life expectancy 70.9 years 81 years

Source: 2006 data from the World Bank