Statement by Ralph G. Neas, President and CEO, GPhA, on the Trans-Pacific Partnership

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"In today's debate on the Trade Promotion Authority, members of the U.S. House of Representatives rightly expressed strong reservations about the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

PRESS RELEASE

WASHINGTON, DC (June 12, 2015) — “In today’s debate on the Trade Promotion Authority, members of the U.S. House of Representatives rightly expressed strong reservations about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The U.S. generic industry is active in markets around the world. American manufacturers of generic drugs need a TPP that will help them continue to grow their exports and create American jobs.

However, TPP is not headed in that direction. As it stands now, TPP will make it harder for the U.S. generic industry to sell its products overseas. That is because the intellectual property provisions in TPP are designed to give longer protection to patented drugs and postpone the entry of cost-saving generic medicines.

In addition to the impact on exports and jobs, this would have enormous implications for U.S. consumers. For instance, Express Scripts projects savings of $250 billion in 10 years should only the 11 likeliest biosimilars enter the market. (Express Scripts, “The $250 Billion Potential of Biosimilars”.) However, a provision in TPP has the potential to prevent the FDA from approving biosimilars for an unlimited period of time while hundreds of patent disputes are litigated, putting that $250 billion in savings at risk.

The U.S. generic industry cannot support a TPP that benefits only one side of the pharmaceutical industry, jeopardizing the right of patients in America and around the world to have timely access to affordable medicines. GPhA encourages Congress to continue demanding accountability in TPP and we will continue our efforts to obtain a balanced TPP that promotes both innovation and competition, and allows the U.S. generic industry to continue to make affordable medicines available.”

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