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Multi National Medical Companies demand increase in life-saving medicines

04 June, 2007

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ISLAMABAD: Despite earning huge profit, the Multi National Medical Companies instead of reducing the prices have demanded a 5-10 percent increase in 178 life-saving medicines.

The Medical Companies in an application to Health Ministry said that the prices of medicines have not been increased in the country for the last many years while the prices of raw material have been increased immensely in the international market.

The prices of electricity, gas and petrol has also been increased as well as manufacturing expenditures and 5 to 10 percent increase is vital for the survival of Pharmaceutical Industry in the country, the application said.

According to the sources, at present there are 28 Multi National Medical Companies whereas the total number of Medical Companies is 409. The consumption in the country touched the figure of Rs. 177 billion while medicine worth of 75 million are exported.

The 80 percent of the requirements of medicines are prepared in the country while 20 percent are fulfilled by the exporting of the medicines. The huge quantity of raw material use in the preparation of medicine in the country is imported.

Sources further said that the government of Pakistan aiming to stable the prices of medicines has given incentives to Medical Companies including only 0.5 percent duty on the import of machinery while the machinery also exempted from the sales tax.

Besides all the incentives given to the Medical Companies, they have demanded the increase in the price of medicines while a number of medicines already out of reach from the purchasing power of the common man.

The Medical Companies are not only earning huge profit but are also giving 15 to 80 percent profit margin to doctors, distributors and medical stores, however on the other hand are also not intending to reduce the prices of medicines.

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