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[e-drug] Multinationals out to make higher profits in developing countries (6)

E-DRUG: Multinationals out to make higher profits in developing countries (6)

Dear E-Druggers

The argument that "losses there have to made up here through higher prices" is 
almost always false and a rationale to justify higher prices. To see a full 
explanation, published in the BMJ, read Light & Lexchin, "Foreign free 
riders..." (and related articles on myths) at www.pharmamyths.net.  This 2005 
article addresses the widely promoted claim that European and Canadian prices 
are so low that companies cannot recoup their R&D costs, and this is why US 
prices are so high - 'it's those cheap, socialist wealthy countries like 
Canada, the UK, or France that lie behind high US prices'. But we found that 
company and government data do not support this myth. The same may apply to 
higher prices in Kenya. 

You can figure that well-made pills cost 8-12 cents each to manufacture in 
bulk; so companies might lose money if prices were below about 24-36 cents 
each. This is not counting large gross profits made in affluent countries and 
in private markets in developing countries from selling the drug for 10-50 
times that much. 

Don Light

Donald W. Light
Cell: 609-216-0071

Professor, UDMNJ-SOM
Visiting Researcher, Center for Migration & Development, Princeton University  
Network Fellow, Safra Center for Ethics, Harvard University 
Senior Fellow, Center for Bioethics, University of Pennsylvania

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