The large international pharmaceutical companies continue their campaign
for new patent rules that the provinces fear will cost taxpayers billions of dollars in additional costs. The lead lobby for the companies, RxD, brought former Prime Minister Brian Mulroney to Ottawa earlier this month to praise reforms
from the 1980s that he argued have worked well for Canada. Yet those reforms came with a condition: in return for reforms that granted the companies far stronger patent rights, RxD companies promised to increase their spending on research and development in Canada so that it would rise to 10% of total sales by 1996.
Now the same companies are lobbying relentlessly for a new round of patent reforms that they say will lead to further growth in research and development. However, a new report from government’s Patented Medicines Prices Review Board shows that RxD spending to sales ratio continues a decade-long decline, hitting its lowest level since the 1987 reforms.
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The Globe has a terrific masthead editorial today that notes the failure of big pharmaceutical companies to live up to their research and development commitments. It notes that those same companies are now demanding further IP reforms as part of the Canada – EU Trade Agreement.
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