Competition Commission studies pharma sector practices
New Delhi: Fair trade regulator Competition Commission has initiated a comprehensive study of the domestic pharmaceutical industry, including prevalent pricing and selling practices, amid concerns over availability of cheaper drugs.
Competition Commission of India (CCI), which keeps on anti-competitive practices at the market place, has started a study on the domestic pharmaceutical industry.
A senior Commission official said the study is looking into various dimensions in manufacturing and sale of pharmaceuticals.
"Various issues such as patent regime, the process of manufacturing, pricing, reasonable terms and conditions and the sale of drugs through chemists and druggists, will be looked into (in the study)," the official said.
The study comes at a time when the government is making efforts to make drugs more affordable for the common people, In this regard, the new drug policy -- that could help in making more medicines cheaper -- is being implemented.
The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has started fixing the ceiling prices for more than 300 drugs, following notification of the Drug Prices Control Order (DPCO), 2013, effective from May 15.
For the year ended May 2013, the domestic pharma market was worth over Rs 74,000 crore, according to estimates.
Meanwhile, the CCI earlier this year had slapped penalty on All India Organisation of Chemists & Druggists (AIOCD) for indulging in unfair trade practices that influenced prices of drugs and restricted supplies into the market.
In the order passed in February, the Commission had also asked the association members to "cease and desist from indulging in and following the practices which have been found anti-competitive".