VIETNAM OBLIGES DRUGMAKERS TO PUBLISH PRICE DATA
Vietnam's pharmaceutical market regulator, the Pharmaceutical Administration Department (PAD), has issued a new regulation obliging drug producers to publish import, wholesale and retail prices on a website. The deadline for compliance, according to international reports, is March 2006.
Despite soaring demand and a strong economy, Vietnam has been slow to confront the reality of surging pharmaceuticals prices in recent months. The government is reported to be considering requests for rises of between 5% and10%, but sources claim that many firms have simply implemented the rises without waiting for official blessing.
A further reason stated for the rises has been the cost of implementing GMP manufacturing standards, with 58 of Vietnam's 175 drug firms now estimated to be in compliance. The cost of drug raw materials, 90% of which are imported, is also reported to have soared in recent months.
Under the new Pharmaceutical Law introduced in October 2005, any price rises
above 1% require prior official approval. The PAD has previously pledged to
"severely punish" unauthorised price rises and block approval of rises
above those in "comparable neighbouring states."