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Profit hungry mafia again raises medicine prices

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By Commerce Reporter KARACHI: A number of multinational pharmaceutical companies have increased the prices of medicines by 60 to 120 per cent just before budget- 2017 while the federal government has already made a plan to increase the prices of national and multinational pharmaceutical companies’ drugs by 8 to 13 per cent in annual budget. Sources at medicine market told this scribe that some multinational pharmaceutical company have increased the prices of their medicines, specially drugs used for treatment of fever, cough, flu, stomach cramps, neurological disorders, as well as, drugs used in treatment of children by 60 to 120 per cent. They said pharmaceutical companies have increased the prices of dozens of medicines without any permission from the government. On the other hand, the federal government has already planned to increase prices of national and multinational pharmaceutical companies’ drugs by 8 to 13 per cent in budget-2017, they said. The drug price increase will further burden the pockets of the poor and low income families already suffering due to higher cost of medicines These companies have also created an artificial shortage of drugs in the market after increasing their prices and issued the new lists of drug prices to local medicine markets. The prices of Buscopan plus tablet has jumped from Maximum Retail price (MRP)of Rs 200 to new Maximum Retail Price of Rs 390, Wintogino Balm’s old maximum retail price of Rs 40 is increased to Rs 60 and Neurobion tablet’s (pack) old retail price of Rs 250 has been raised to new retail price Rs 550. Similarly, Neurobion Injection old retail price of Rs 275 increased to new retail price Rs 600, Basiquin tablet old retail price 800 to new retail price 1200, Citralka Syrup old retail price Rs32 to new retail price Rs45, Ponstan Fort tablet old retail price Rs450 to new retail price Rs500, Nilstat Drops old retail price Rs50 to new retail price Rs65 and so on. President, Wholesale Chemists Council of Pakistan (WCCP) Muhammad Atif Hanif, strongly condemned the unilateral increase of drug prices by pharmaceutical companies and said that hike in medicine prices is not acceptable. He termed that hike will double the miseries of people.

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