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Donald Trump's push for lower drug prices may benefit Indian pharma

Indian pharmaceutical sector is likely to gain, rather than being impacted, as the new US President Donald Trump aims to reduce drug prices since the country’s generic medicines are already affordable, according to industry players.

“Considering the fact that India offers a low-cost innovation and manufacturing hub and India-made generics sometimes cost almost one-tenth of branded drugs sold in the US, we are likely to be least affected by the anticipated policy changes,” Biocon Chairperson and MD Kiran Mazumdar Shaw told PTI.

She further said Trump would focus on introducing new pricing models that will make expensive innovative drugs more affordable.

“If controlling healthcare costs is a priority for the new administration, I believe the Indian pharma industry is already aligned with US President Donald Trump’s vision,” Mazumdar Shaw added.

Echoing similar sentiments, Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance (IPA) Secretary General Dilip G Shah said: “We are positioning ourselves as a trust worthy and reliable partner of the US for access to quality medicines at the affordable prices.” He said Trump wants American companies to manufacture domestically and selling products at the US prices. Likewise, to fill in the void of Obamacare, he will not mind imports of quality medicines from India at the affordable prices.”

A Glenmark spokesperson said traditionally, Indian pharma companies are known to offer products at lesser prices and it will look to address the rising drug prices in future as well.

Mazumdar Shaw said Indian pharma industry has for decades contributed significantly to contain and bring down healthcare costs in the US by supplying high-quality yet affordable generic drugs to the country.

“The US bought $4.74 billion, or over a third of the $12.54 billion worth of drugs exported by India in 2015,” she said.

“With India now emerging as a leading global supplier of biosimilars, biopharma companies are well-placed to address the unmet need for more affordable versions of biologic products around the world, including the US,” Mazumdar Shaw added.