In a move similar to what Thailand has been threatening to do with some of Abbott
Brazil already receives a steep discount on the price that Merck charges it for its HIV compounds. Nevertheless, it wants still lower prices to help reduce the government's costs associated with supplying drugs to those living with HIV/AIDS.
With the push for cheaper drug prices by circumventing a pharmaceutical company's patents, it's no wonder that drug companies are moving into developing more biologics, which can't be reproduced nearly as easily (if at all), compared to small molecule compounds. AstraZeneca
What's at issue here is that many small molecule compounds like HIV/AIDS drugs can be easily reproduced at low cost, and this increases the temptation to ignore their patent protection. While the idea of breaking a patent and stealing a company's intellectual property may seem like a noble cause in the case of providing medicines to the poor, this reduces the long-term incentive for drug companies to innovate and produce new novel therapeutics. The main difference between stealing existing intellectual property protecting marketed drugs and stealing food from farmers to feed the poor is that the former can be done at costs that aren't as visible on the surface, whereas the economic cost of raiding a farm is more calculable.
Or, to put it another way, I'm sure Brazil's government and Petrobras
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