More Costly Medicines For Malaysians As Ringgit Slides
Malaysians will likely have to pay for more costly medicines in the near future as drug prices escalate due to the weak Ringgit, said the Malaysian Organisation of Pharmaceutical Industries (Mopi).
Mopi represents all the major pharmaceutical companies that produce generic and biosimilar medicines locally.
The organisation’s president Diong Sing Peng, told The Star that the price of medicines is more heavily affected by foreign exchange rates and current economic challenges, than with the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA).
He added that the TPPA’s impact on the local pharmaceutical industry has not been significant so far.
Diong was referring to a clause in the TPPA that allows for extension of the 20-year patent period if there is an unreasonable delay of the application process.
This is defined in the agreement as five years from the point of application or three years after a request for examination of application, whichever is later.
The Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia’s client charter for granting of patents is 26 months for ordinary submissions.
In addition, a clause in the TPPA states that application to market new medicines in Malaysia must be filed within 18 months of the first application to market the drug anywhere in the world.