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GSK plans to become leading supplier of anti-HIV drugs for state needs in Russia

UK pharma major GlaxoSmithKline (LSE: GSK) plans to become a leading supplier of anti-HIV drugs for state needs in Russia, according to sources in the Russian Ministry of Health, reports The Pharma Letter’s local correspondent.

To date, the company has secured several contracts with the Russian government for the supplies of anti-HIV and other drugs totaling more than 1.5 billion roubles ($24 million) for the current year. The company decided to not use services of distributors and directly sign contracts with the federal Ministry of Health.

GSK confirmed the decision to independently participate in deliveries of anti-HIV drugs to the Russian government, by saying that “it will lead to ensuring the stability of supplies and will contribute to the most optimal planning."

By winning this year's tenders, GSK has become a new player in the Russian public procurement market for antiviral drugs. In 2013-2016, tenders were conducted by regional authorities, based on their own needs. Annually, about 4,000 procurements were announced, in which about a hundred companies participated. But supply disruptions and big difference of prices for drugs in certain regions of the country led to the adoption in 2017 the centralization of public procurements.

According to some Russian pharmaceutical business analysts, GSK's portfolio contains such expensive drugs that they can be sold only on state purchases. According to experts, the refusal to work with third-party suppliers reduces the manufacturer's costs.

In Russia, GSK currently has a joint venture with Pfizer and Shionogi for the production of drugs for HIV and AIDS.


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