USA For Innovation Launches Thai Myth #3

WASHINGTON, May 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — ThaiMyths.com (http://www.thaimyths.com/), a project of USA For Innovation, unveiled Myth #3 today to draw attention to the deceit in Thailand’s decision to steal American and European innovation. Each business day for two weeks from May 7 — May 18, ThaiMyths.com will release additional information regarding one of the ten recent myths by the Health Minister Mongkol na Songkhla.

Today’s Myth: #3 of 10

Myth: Thailand is just trying to lower the cost of western medicines.

Fact: Thailand places high tariffs on prescription drugs and pharmaceutical ingredients, while receiving fair prices for safe, approved western medicines.

FACT: The Thai Government Places High Tariffs On Ingredients For Prescription Drugs As Well As Finished Pharmaceutical Products.

According To A World Health Organization commission study, Thailand places a weighted average tariff rate of 18 percent on finished pharmaceutical products. A study by WHO’s Commission on Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation and Public Health found that Thailand places a weighted average tariff of 18% on finished pharmaceutical products — a tariff that brought the Thai government over $67.2 million in revenue during 2001 alone. (Commission On Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation And Public Health, Accessed 5/8/07)

FACT: Drug manufacturers have slashed the cost of drugs shipped to Thailand.

A leading university of Chicago scholar pointed out that Abbott laboratories cut its price on a cutting edge AIDS drug by over 50 percent. “[N]o drug company looks like an unreasonable hold-out when it has already made significant price concessions, such as those made to Thailand, where the price of an annual course of treatment for Kaletra has dropped from $2,200 to $1,000, even before the recent showdown.” (Richard A. Epstein, “AIDS Drugs,” FT.com, 5/7/07)

FACT: Not all countries abusing trade regulations do so for humanitarian reasons.

The University Of Chicago’s Richard Epstein: “Bargaining abuse is not the unique preserve of nations. It can also originate in nations whose own economic houses may not be in order.” (Richard A. Epstein, “AIDS Drugs,” FT.com, 5/7/07)

About USA For Innovation and ThaiMyths.com
USA For Innovation is a non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of intellectual property and continued innovation around the globe. USA For Innovation educates decision makers, the media and general public about threats to innovation. ThaiMyths.com is a project of USA For Innovation intended to expose the web of deceit by Thailand’s Health Ministry.

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