Lessons From Mercosur Multi-Country Pricing Negotiations
Executive SummaryLatin American joint price negotiations have proved successful and other countries are taking note.
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Latin American countries are continuing to pursue a strategy of jointly negotiating medicine prices to get a better deal on expensive medicines. However, manufacturers have expressed doubt that this is the best way forward.
Pharmaceutical companies wanting to sell high-cost drugs in Latin America may find themselves talking with multiple countries at once to find a single acceptable price. Mercosur member and associate countries are wielding their collective might to secure lower prices through a new negotiation mechanism supported by the Pan American Health Organization / World Health Organization. Mercosur health ministers have already announced an offer from Gilead to supply its hepatitis C drug Sovaldi (sofosbuvir) and next up for discussion are likely to be costly cancer medicines.
The World Trade Organization is not the place to discuss pharmaceutical pricing, and strong intellectual property rights do not threaten access to medicines, according to EU and US delegations to the WTO.