Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

Polish democracy under threat: EU warns Warsaw over judicial independence

Read more

PEOPLE & PROFIT

Game of Thrones and TV's golden age

Read more

ENCORE!

The best of the summer's exhibitions in Paris

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Game of Thrones returns: Mega fans bask in themed pop-up bar

Read more

FOCUS

Unwanted children: 3,800 babies abandoned in South Africa every year

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

'Looking for Lenin': The search for fallen Soviet statues in Ukraine

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

From footballer to inmate: Will OJ Simpson be released?

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Time to taper? ECB governing council meets in Frankfurt

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Macron and the military: Has power gone to his head?

Read more

EU charges Teva over delaying cheap sleep drug

© AFP/File | European Union regulators on Monday filed antitrust charges against Israeli drug-maker Teva for colluding to delay a cheaper generic version of modafinil, a blockbuster sleep drug

BRUSSELS (AFP) - 

European Union regulators on Monday filed antitrust charges against Israeli drug-maker Teva for colluding to delay a cheaper generic version of modafinil, a blockbuster sleep drug.

The European Commission said in a statement that it had informed Teva of its "preliminary view" that an agreement concluded with rival Cephalon was in breach of EU antitrust rules.

Under the agreement, Teva committed not to market a cheaper generic version of modafinil, Cephalon's drug for sleep disorders, the EU said.

The EU, under the stewardship of Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, said Teva had agreed to the delay in return for "a substantial transfer of value from Cephalon through a series of cash payments and various other agreements."

In a similar case, in 2014 the commission hit French drugs giant Servier with a huge 331-million-euro fine for colluding to delay a cheaper generic version of perindopril, a popular blood pressure treatment. Teva was also fined in that case.

Generic products are far cheaper than brand medicines and lead to huge savings to patients and health care providers while remaining just as effective.

But in so-called pay-for-delay deals, drug makers secretly compensate generic rivals to thwart the introduction of cheaper versions of blockbuster drugs for an agreed time.

Drug makers argue that the arrangement allows them sufficient time to recoup expensive research and marketing costs incurred to bring their products to the market.

This latest EU case involving modafinil was opened in 2011. Teva settled similar litigation with US anti-trust authorities in 2015.

There is no legal deadline for the Commission to complete the case.

© 2017 AFP