[Ip-health] News: PharmaTimes- China plans to curb foreign drugmakers' pricing powers

Terri Beswick Terri at haieurope.org
Mon Nov 29 04:34:54 PST 2010

China plans to curb foreign drugmakers' pricing powers 

World News | November 29, 2010 


Lynne Taylor 


China's National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) has announced
plans to curb the prices of essential drugs produced by
foreign-capitalised firms.


Such products have in the past been excluded from China's regular rounds
of price reductions, and their makers have had independent pricing
powers since 2000 as a way of encouraging R&D, but they will be the
first batch of products to be targeted in the next price-cutting round,
according to the Chinese newspaper 21st Century Business Herald.


These medicines are often vastly more expensive than domestically-priced
counterparts; a survey of nine products conducted by the China
Pharmaceutical Industry Research and Development Association recently
found that prices of the versions made by foreign-capitalised firms
were, on average, 1,311% higher than their domestic equivalents.


NRDC officials said late last week that the Commission will be making
"persistent efforts to bring down the prices of some relatively
expensive drugs." They added that the price cuts will be introduced in a
step-wise fashion, and that they will be holding discussions with the
pharmaceutical companies involved. These firms are expected to be hit
hard by the new curbs, says the newspaper, which comments that the
policy "can be seen as an end of the super-national treatment afforded
to foreign companies."


Meantime, the China Pharmaceutical Industry Research and Development
Association (SINO-PhIRDA)  and the Pharmaceutical Research and
Manufacturers of America (PhRMA)  have this month signed a cooperation
framework in Washington DC. They say that the deal embodies their intent
to "continue a regular dialogue that will facilitate the two
organizations working together."


"Everyone is impressed by the dedication and commitment of Chinese
biopharmaceutical research companies to create new and better medicines
for the global market. At PhRMA we all look forward to the time when we,
hopefully, will count many of the companies here today as PhRMA member
companies," said PhRMA chief executive John Castellani.


"The better ties between our two countries, along with better ties
between PhRMA member companies and SINO-PhIRDA and the Chinese
biopharmaceutical research industry will help us better address the
scientific, medical, regulatory and other challenges we face and help
us, together, make better medicines available to the world's patients
who need and who hope for new cures and treatments," he added. 





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