Sunday, April 30, 2006

Threat from generics in an online world

A few months ago there were two prices for Cipro online: the price in New York $5 a tablet, and in Delhi 35c a tablet.

One was made officially, the other was an "illegal" generic.

In the old days before the web such a thing would hardly have mattered so long as generics stayed in emerging economies where sales of the high priced alternative would have been almost zero.

But in the net world, with Fedex and other carriers able to carry packets in a day, and customs / regulators overwhelmed, more or less any medicine can turn up in any country from any source.

Expect countries like India and China to tighten up their intellectual property regulations, while other emerging nations quickly fill the gap as safe havens for unauthorised generic manufacturing.
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