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Competition Council investigates Roche Romania for possible abuse of dominant position on the market for certain oncologic products

The Competition Council has launched two investigations into a possible abuse of the dominant position of Roche Romania SRL on the Romanian oncologic market, the institution has announced.

One of the investigations is aimed at possible anti-competitive behaviour consisting in the fact that Roche Romania SRL, in relation to one of its distributor, has wholesale prices higher than the prices offered by Roche Romania SRL in the context of auctioning procedures for the supply of medicines to hospitals, hotnews.ro informs.

The second investigation relates to acts and facts of Roche Romania SRL which have the effect of excluding the generic (cheaper) variant of Tarceva innovative drug from the market. Tarceva is a Roche medicine that contains the active substance Erlotinibum and is used to treat cancer. Tarceva is included in the settled drugs list.

The innovative medicine is a patent-protected medicine when it is launched on the market.

Following the sector inquiry into the pharmaceutical market, completed this year, the Competition Council found that generic medicines, although cheaper than their innovative variants, fail to gain a significant market share.

In the survey, the Competition Council analyzed the marketing and promotional activities carried out in connection with the sale of medicines and found possible correlation between the marketing activities of the innovative drug companies and the low penetration rate of the generic medicines. Thus, although the prescription of drugs is made on the active substance, and only in exceptional, justified cases, on the trade mark, 57% of the patients request a trade name following the physician’s recommendations, recommendations resulting from intense promotions by the innovative drug manufacturers.

Unannounced inspections were carried out at the premises of Roche Romania SRL during the investigations.

Roche is one of the giants of the world-wide pharmaceutical market, the company producing and distributing high technology, innovative medicines targeting therapeutic areas where there are special needs such as oncology.

About Valeriu Lazar

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