China to increase drug safety standards

Updated: 2012-02-14 19:43

By Liu Jie (Xinhua)

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China's State Council issued the 12th Five-Year Development Plan (2011-2015) for Pharmaceutical Safety Standard Monday, to raise industry standards and improve safety supervision.

The plan, formulated by the National Development and Reform Commission, said that the government is to raise the quality standards of 6,500 Chinese-made medicines, including 2,500 synthetic drugs, 2,800 processed Chinese medicines, 200 bio-pharmaceuticals, 350 medical herbs and 650 traditional Chinese medical decoctions.

China will also improve the requirements for 239 drug packaging materials and 332 types of medical supplies, as well as raise industrial standards for 500 types medical devices.

The Ministry of Health will also re-assess all drugs on the market and crack down on illegal distribution of pharmaceuticals, such as selling medicine online.

According to industry insiders, the plan will benefit large pharmaceutical companies with high-quality products and strong technological capability. It will adversely affect small businesses engaged in price wars. This may result in more mergers and acquisitions in the industry in the next four years, the commission said.