China probes against foreign pharma unfair: EU business lobby - (Fidelity via NewsPoints Desk)

  • The European Union Chamber of Commerce said that foreign pharmaceutical companies in China have been unfairly targeted by a string of investigations into bribery and price-fixing, as reported Thursday in Fidelity.
  • GlaxoSmithKline has been accused of funneling up to 3 billion yuan ($490 million) to travel agencies to facilitate bribes to doctors to boost the sale of its medicines, while Chinese authorities have also visited offices of Novo Nordisk, Lundbeck, AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly and UCB.
  • Bruno Gensburger, chair of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in China's pharmaceutical working group, said the foreign companies that have been investigated all have global standard operating procedures (SOPs) and are "at large" very responsible in their China practices.
  • "What I feel is a little bit unfair is that the foreign companies which are most serious about SOPs have been the most investigated and the most discriminated. To my knowledge today, no Chinese company has been investigated," Gensburger remarked.
  • "We all want to work in a very clean environment. The question we ask today is if this campaign is aimed just to frighten some companies or create a special climate, I don't think it will solve anything," Gensburger added.
  • The Chamber's president, Davide Cucino, said companies would be satisfied if the cases are handled according to law and if there is a balanced focus on corruption within domestic firms in the Chinese press.

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