Big Pharma is fed up with the Indian government. India has been on a bit of a crusade the past few years against the high drug prices charged for treatments for cancer, HIV, diabetes and hepatitis that are deemed to be beyond the means of the local populace. The result has been the denial/overturn of patents and or issuing compulsory licenses to allow lower price producers into the Indian market. This disdain for IP has the Westen drug makers MAD. As such, their trade association, PhRMA, has petitioned the US Government to downgrade India to a "Priority Foreign Country" with regard to intellectual property. This is the lowest ranking occupied currently by only the Ukraine.
India is currently on the Priority Watch List and is joined there by the likes of China, Indonesia, Pakistan, Russia, Thailand and Argentina. You can see many of these are among the fastest growing emerging markets -- particularly with regard to pharma. No doubt there are strong economic motives in play here. The Western pharma companies have fallen on harder times with regard to R&D ROI and feel they have spent signficantly to get new drugs to market. They don't want that investment diminshed by lack of patent protection in emerging markets. This is especially true in my view as they looked at these more "virgin" markets as potential sites to make up for their current sales shortfalls. Now the emerging markets, particularly India, are not playing so nice. See The Economic Times and Fierce Pharma.
Posted by Bruce Lehr Feb 6th 2014.