Cipla, Alembic drug-price cases to come up next week

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on July 19, 2013

Two cases related to the recently-revised Drug Price Control Order, 2013, are set to come up for hearing next week.

The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) requires drug companies to sell their products at revised prices.

The new prices take effect 45 days from the day they were notified by the Government.

In a recently-filed petition in the Delhi High Court, Cipla has said that while it is possible for all stocks manufactured after the date of notification to bear the revised prices, it would be difficult to recall stocks already supplied to the market with taxes paid.

An NPPA official, however, maintains that drug companies were familiar with the new pricing formula and should have planned accordingly.

The new policy has brought all 348 drugs in the National List of Essential Medicines under the ambit of price control.

The ceiling price has been fixed at the simple average of all drugs in a particular formulation with a market share of one per cent.

Calculation dispute

In a separate case, filed in Gujarat, Alembic has questioned the interpretation of this formula. Companies in the past have said that all brands with an independent market share of one per cent or more needed to be factored into the calculation. The NPPA, though, was also taking into account multiple brands in a single formulation from a company to arrive at the one per cent cut-off.

Drug associations have in the past raised these calculation concerns with the NPPA.

The NPPA chief had earlier told Business Line that consumers would see revised prices by mid-August. Drug prices across various categories, including antibiotics and anti-infectives, are expected to dip 10-70 per cent , say analysts.

Large companies, both domestic and multinational, could be impacted. According to industry estimates, price-controlled drugs contribute about 18 per cent of the over Rs 70,000-crore domestic pharmaceutical market.

Published on July 19, 2013

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