The Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance (IPA), the association of research-based
Indian pharmaceutical companies, today said the amended patent bill strikes
a balance between consumers'' interests and that of innovators.
to the Bill, IPA president Habil Khorakiwala said, "This is a major achievement
of the UPA government. The changes in the definition of patentability, restoration
of pre-grant opposition and automatic license of right would help maintain
supply and prices of medicines currently manufactured in India. It would also
allay the fears of developing countries about the continuity of supply of
low-cost medicines from India."
said the product patent regime would encourage Indian industry to invest more
funds into research and development. "I am confident that India''s scientific
talent and entrepreneurship will leverage the new patent regime to turn the
country into an international hub for innovation in the coming years."
Protection of intellectual property will also encourage international companies
to leverage India''s intellectual and cost advantages to establish research
centres in India. The new regime will also accelerate the reverse brain drain
of Indian scientific talent to India to make India a global centre for pharmaceutical
new patent regime will help domestic industry meet its ambitious target of
acquiring one-third of the global generic market," Khorakiwala added.
The fast-growing global generics market offers an opportunity to step up Indian
exports six fold from the current level of Rs15,000 crore to Rs90,000 crore
by 2010. This will lead to new investment in the manufacturing sector and
open up new job opportunities. The surplus generated by the industry from
exports will help fund increased investment in research. The Indian industry''s
investment in R&D has grown eight fold in the last nine years from Rs140
crore to over Rs1,100 crore in 2004 and is expected to touch Rs1,500 crore
also hoped for some corrections in the new Bill, under which Indian residents
cannot file patents overseas without the prior consent of the ''controller
of patents''; the doing away of the three-year
cooling period for the grant of compulsory license, a provision not required
under TRIPS and a withdrawl of the option of early publication of patent applications.