More foreign drug firms face scrutiny in China

An automated robot arm picks up a bottle

China is reportedly putting more foreign drug firms under scrutiny, state media said on Tuesday, days after the conclusion of a police probe into alleged bribery by employees of Britain’s GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

Earlier this month, Chinese authorities ended a nearly one-year probe into GSK, accusing a top British executive of ordering employees to commit bribery and handing the case over to prosecutors.

Health authorities in the eastern city of Hangzhou were looking into the business practices of other drug companies, including US-based Eli Lilly, Britain’s AstraZeneca and Novo Nordisk of Denmark, the 21st Century Business Herald newspaper reported, citing an internal document.

But two of the foreign companies named said the Hangzhou health bureau had not notified them of any such moves.

Another company, Swiss pharmaceuticals giant Roche, has previously said that officials from China’s State Administration for Industry and Commerce had visited its offices in Hangzhou. Roche was not cited by the newspaper.

The GSK case came to light in June last year through a local investigation, after police in the central Chinese city of Changsha announced they were examining the company’s employees for “economic crimes”.

The 21st Century Business Herald said Eli Lilly, AstraZeneca and Novo Nordisk were required to conduct self inspections for kickbacks and report to local authorities.

But Eli Lilly on Tuesday denied it had been approached by Hangzhou health authorities.

“Lilly has not been contacted by (the) Hangzhou Health Bureau,” the company said in a statement provided to AFP. “We fully cooperate with any inquiries we receive from (the) government and its agencies in China.”

AstraZeneca offered a similar denial.

“We have not received any official communication on this topic at this time. AZ China cooperates with various Chinese authorities on a regular basis across a wide range of interactions,” it said.

Novo Nordisk declined to comment, adding it would make a statement if an issue was deemed to have material impact on the company.

An official of the Hangzhou health bureau said no one was available to comment.

China’s healthcare sector is widely considered to be riddled with graft, given the opaque tendering system for drugs and doctors’ low salaries.

The government last year launched sweeping probes into alleged malpractice by foreign companies in several sectors, and against the backdrop of an anti-graft campaign backed by President Xi Jinping to root out official corruption.

 

 

 

 

 

Source : Channel News Asia | May 27, 2014

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About thomasdinnocenzi

Thomas D’Innocenzi is a highly accomplished, results-focused international consultant with extensive experience in global sourcing and business development worldwide to meet evolving business needs. Tom has proven ability in implementing and managing profitable global marketing and sourcing operations. He has extensive experience in international business development to accommodate rapid growth. Skilled in building top-performing teams, bench-marking performance, and developing organizations to improve efficiency, productivity, and profitability. Experienced transition leader and change agent. Tom founded Nova Advisors with the mission of providing expert Global Business Development consulting services for companies seeking to expand their market share as an independent consultant. Tom has a network of experts and advisors throughout the Asia-Pacific region and North America. His expertise includes business development, global sourcing, manufacturing, commodities, logistics, QA/QC, FDA, regulatory compliance, sustainability, and supply chain optimization. Tom is experienced in the medical device, apparel, consumer goods and technology services verticals helping companies advance their global sourcing capabilities and develop new markets through a local and sustained approach. Located in SE Asia and the United States, Tom expands market reach to drive sales. His global sourcing strategy includes directly negotiating with commodity suppliers, supply chain networks and distributors for optimal terms based on his expertise and first-hand knowledge of the players. Contact Tom to use his consulting service to increase your global market and make global sourcing profitable for you in the Asia Pacific Region and the United States. http://www.NovaAdvisors.com thomas@NovaAdvisors.com USA Direct: +1.904.479.3600 SINGAPORE: +65.6818.6396 THAILAND: +662.207.9269
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