When The Boston Consulting Group published a research report about the Top 100 firms from Emerging markets set to make waves in the global arena, only three pharmaceutical companies figured in the list and all of them were based in India – Cipla, Ranbaxy and Dr.Reddy’s. The report noted that R&D costs in India are much cheaper compared to the West and the quality of researchers is showing vast improvement. Hence, Ranbaxy Labs’ $87 million annual budget for R&D can achieve quite a lot.
But according to a Financial Times Report, the Indian Pharmaceutical Industry is facing a peculiar problem – traditional reverence to animals like rats and monkeys in India is apparently hindering progress in the R & D sector. The US Food and Drug Administration and other regulators around the world require new drugs to be tested on animals like rats and dogs whereas toxicology tests(that might kill the animals) on such animals are banned in India. This is apart from the likely opposition from animal rights groups like Peta.
For China, it wouldn’t be much of a problem since most of these animals appear to be delicacies there. (Warning: graphic content)