New Report: Big Pharma Breaks R&D Spending Promise to Canadians for Seventh Consecutive Year

    Only two per cent of Canadian sales directed to new medicine discovery

    TORONTO, July 14 /CNW/ - For the seventh consecutive year, brand-name
drug companies have broken their promise to spend at least 10 per cent of
their Canadian sales on research and development in Canada, according to the
recently released annual report of the Patented Medicine Prices Review Board
(PMPRB). The PMPRB report also shows that the brand-name industry spent only
two per cent of its Canadian sales on basic research in 2007 that could lead
to the discovery of new medicines.
    "The data is very clear," said Jim Keon, President of the Canadian
Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA). "Twenty years of government
concessions to Big Pharma have not resulted in the investments that Canadians
were promised when the Mulroney government first increased Big Pharma
monopolies in 1987."
    The PMPRB's findings and other information related to pharmaceutical
industry investment in Canada are contained in a new report released today by
CGPA. Copies of The Real Story Behind Big Pharma's R&D Spending in Canada,
2008, are available at
    On June 18, 2008, the PMPRB tabled its 2007 Annual Report to Parliament
on the price of brand-name patented drugs and Big Pharma's research and
development spending in Canada. The following summarizes the report's

    -  For seven consecutive years, pharmaceutical patentees have failed to
       meet the minimum commitments for R&D spending in Canada that were made
       to the Canadian government when Big Pharma's state-sanctioned and
       enforced market monopolies were increased in 1987. Pharmaceutical
       patentees spent only 8.3 per cent of their revenues on research and
       development in 2007, below the 10 per cent threshold to which the
       industry committed in 1987.

    -  Patentees reported spending $259 million on basic research in 2007,
       representing only 2 per cent of their Canadian sales revenue.

    -  Relative to other countries, increased pharmaceutical patent
       protection has not resulted in more research and development in
       Canada. In 2005, of all countries examined by the PMPRB, only Italy
       (6.8 per cent) had a lower R&D-to-sales ratio than Canada (8.3 per
       cent). Ratios in all other comparator countries were well above
       Canada's ratio.

    -  Of the 151 new active substances introduced in Canada between 2001 and
       2006, only 14 (less than 10 per cent) were categorized by the PMPRB as
       a "breakthrough" or "substantial improvement" over existing drug

For further information:

For further information: Jeff Connell, Director of Public Affairs,
Canadian Generic Pharmaceutical Association (CGPA), Tel: (416) 223-2333,

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