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Friday, Feb 08, 2002

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Drug price control order `sketchy'

Our Bureau

MUMBAI, Feb. 7

THE Indian pharmaceutical industry is still unclear on the drug price control order (DPCO). Top officials of leading pharma companies said that things are sketchy as to what the final list of drugs coming under price control will be.

Mr M.K. Hamied, Director, Cipla Ltd told Business Line that apart from the price control, issues such as research and development benefits are still unclear.

"These issues are very crucial not only for Cipla but also the Indian industry keeping in mind the post-2005 scenario,'' he said. Other industry watchers said that most Indian companies would not be affected as they have a business strategy in place keeping in mind the DPCO.

"Most Indian companies have the choice of introducing drugs or new molecules and thereby bringing down the exposure to the DPCO to a minimal. However, multinational companies do not have that luxury,'' an industry watcher said.

Analysts said that MNCs such as Glaxo, Pfizer and EMerck would benefit immensely going by the criteria laid out by the policy.

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