European Union (EU) fines 9 drug companies 146 million Euros for Blocking Cheaper Drugs

2013 June 26
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As if to underline our points about the Indian ban on Dextropropoxyphene, nine drug manufactuers were fined a total of 146 million euros  by EU antitrust regulators on Wednesday for blocking the supply of a cheaper anti-depressant medicine to the market. This action follows a 2009 report by the European Commission on the pharmaceutical sector, which said “pay-for-delay” deals lead to consumers paying as much as 20% more for their medicines.

The EU action came two days after the U.S. Supreme Court said that U.S. regulators could challenge deals between brand-name drug companies and generic rivals because of the higher consumer costs.

Pay-for-delay agreements involve brand-name firms paying generic companies not to deliver versions of their drugs, which usually cost a fraction of the original medicine, to market, although the issue is also complicated by patent ownership.

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