News Column

China Gets Tough on GlaxoSmithKline Over Bribery

July 19, 2013

China has imposed a travel ban on a British national and vice president of GlaxoSmithKline Steve Nechelput in view of ongoing investigations into charges that the pharmaceutical giant , sources said. The company has been accused of funnelling nearly $500 million to bribe doctors and hospital administrators.

The move comes after GSK's vice president of operations , Liang Hong (49) appeared in a dishevelled state on the state television admitting that the company had used bribery to sell its products. Liang is among the four executives detained by the police and may have been speaking from his detention cell.

"Having spent time reflecting over the past couple of days, I think the money we spent to run our business was too much," Liang said. "All of these costs (of our bribery) were included in the price of the drugs. The money we spent running the business accounted for about 20% to 30% of the drug price."

The Chinese government has been under pressure with a large number of people complaining about high prices of drugs and medical treatment.

Liang's statement gives the government an opportunity to explain the reason behind high medicine prices, sources said.

Source: Copyright Times of India 2013

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