Saturday, October 04, 2008

Roger Bate determines China's Lethal Counterfeit Drugs Pattern

Mr Roger Bate, writer of the book “Making a Killing: The Deadly Implications of the Counterfeit Drug Trade (free pdf-version ),” wrote an article for the Far Eastern Economic Review that gives a good overview of China's counterfeit drug problems.

Mr Bate notices that China's food scandals follow a lethal pattern:

"Someone cuts a corner substituting an unsafe illegal product for a safe legal one; the legal entities trading in the product, which are often unaware of the illegal substitution, at first ignore the problem and then become embarrassed into a recall, often after pressure from foreign governments on Beijing. While Beijing threatens sanctions against the liable companies, including occasionally executing the guiltiest actors, it does little to change the likelihood of another scandal occurring."

Read Mr Bate's article 'Got Contaminated Milk?' here.

In the book 'Making a killing', Mr Bate puts the possibility of a complete victory over counterfeiters into perspective:
"Because counterfeiting represents such an easy and potentially lucrative opportunity for commercial profit, and because it spans industries as diverse as wine, electronics, and medicine, it likely will be never be eradicated. Still, if its characteristics are identified and its real effects understood, its impact may be mitigated substantially. Nowhere is this more evident-and important- than in the battle against the counterfeiting of lifesaving pharmaceuticals, a trade with dangerous implications for public health."

Read Mr Bate's book 'Making a killing' he wrote for the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research here (free pdf-version).

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