EU drugs industry antitrust report out…

The European Commission posted yesterday its report of the pharmaceutical industry from an 18 month investigation of drug industry practices in relation to European Union (EU) antitrust law – summary available here; final report here.

The report finds that patients in the EU are waiting too long for cheaper generic drugs after patents expire, and that the Commission will bring legal cases where it believes companies are acting in an anti-competitive way to delay generics coming to market.

Other conclusions include recommendations for unified EU-wide patent systems to reduce bureaucracy, and new processes for speeding up patent review and generics approvals.

The Competition Commissioner, Neelie Kroes, has commented “The first antitrust investigations are already under way, and regulatory adjustments are expected to follow dealing with a range of problems in the sector.”

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