Fair trade regulator CCI has rejected a complaint against Gilead Sciences Inc that alleged the US-based pharmaceutical company of abusing its dominant position in production of drugs used for AIDS treatment.
Competition Commission of India (CCI) found “no prima facie case” against Gilead Sciences,to hold a probe.
In its order dated March 5,the regulator observed that Gilead Sciences had no legal existence and business operations in India.
Further,the regulator noted the market for production of Antiretroviral (ARV) drugs for treatment of AIDS “was fragmented with many players engaging in the activity of
production/ manufacture of ARV drugs in India”.
“Accordingly,the opposite party (Gilead Sciences) was not a dominant player in the relevant market in India…,” CCI noted.
The complaint was filed by one Manoj Hirasingh Pardeshi,an activist working towards AIDS treatment.
According to Pardeshi,Gilead Sciences had entered into a non-exclusive voluntary license agreements with about ten Indian pharmaceutical firms such as Medchem and Aurobindo for production and distribution of ARV medicines,in 2006.
These agreements stipulated that the licensees would pay royalty of 3-5 per cent on the sale of the finished product.
Further,in 2011,Gilead Sciences signed a deal with a Geneva-based non-profit foundation,Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) to pool licenses and give sub-licenses to pharmaceutical manufacturers worldwide including India.
Subsequently,MPP entered into tripartite agreements with two Indian pharmaceutical companies Aurobindo Pharma and Emcure Pharmaceuticals.
Pardeshi had alleged that various clauses of this deal were anti-competitive such that it limited the production and supply as they restricted the purchase and sale of the drugs only from Gilead Sciences or licensees approved by it,among others.