US peo­ple to pay for medicine levies

China Daily - - BUSINESS - By ZHU WENQIAN zhuwen­qian@ chi­

The Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion’s threat to im­pose ex­tra tar­iffs on crude drugs man­u­fac­tured in China will ul­ti­mately harm the in­ter­ests of the Amer­i­can peo­ple, who will have to pay more for the fi­nal prod­ucts made by lo­cal firms in the United States, said a lead­ing in­dus­try an­a­lyst.

Medicines and health prod­ucts ac­count for ap­prox­i­mately 30 per­cent of the to­tal prod­ucts on which the US au­thor­i­ties threat­ened to levy ex­tra tar­iffs, ac­cord­ing to the China Cham­ber of Com­merce for Im­port and Ex­port of Medicines and Health Prod­ucts.

The cham­ber added that the cus­toms tar­iff codes for ex­port com­modi­ties are dif­fer­ent be­tween the Chi­nese and US cus­toms.

Great Wall Se­cu­ri­ties said the list, which in­cludes in­sulin, peni­cillin, adren­a­line, di­ag­nos­tic kit and nu­clear mag­netic res­o­nance equip­ment, will not have a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on Chi­nese medicine man­u­fac­tur­ers, as most of the prod­ucts ex­ported from China to the US are crude drugs, in­stead of high-tech prod­ucts.

“China is the largest ex­port­ing coun­try of crude drugs. In the short term, the to­tal or­ders might go down, but in the long term, the im­pact will be trans­ferred to the lo­cal phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pa­nies in the US,” said Shi Lichen, an in­dus­try an­a­lyst and the founder of a third-party med­i­cal ser­vices plat­form.

“The price of prepa­ra­tion will in­crease if the price of crude drugs goes up, and the pres­sure on the pay­ment of com­mer­cial in­sur­ances in the US will in­crease sub­stan­tially there­after,” he said.

Meng Dong­ping, deputy di­rec­tor of the cham­ber, said it is ac­tively seek­ing dis­cus­sions with the US through the Min­istry of Com­merce. It be­lieves that the US will grad­u­ally re­al­ize the prob­lem and won’t hurt the fun­da­men­tal in­ter­ests of the two coun­tries.

Last year, the to­tal value of medicines and health prod­ucts ex­ported from China to the US reached $11.17 bil­lion, up 10.9 per­cent year-on-year. Mean­while, the to­tal value of medicines and health prod­ucts im­ported from the US to China reached 10.83 bil­lion yuan, an in­crease of 16.4 per­cent year-on-year, ac­cord­ing to data from the cham­ber.

China has been im­port­ing a large amount of high-end med­i­cal equip­ment, phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal equip­ment, phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal prepa­ra­tions and bi­o­log­i­cal prepa­ra­tions from the US, and the rapid growth of im­ports in the past few years helped to re­duce the trade sur­plus.

“The aging pop­u­la­tion and other prob­lems in China have fur­ther stim­u­lated the rigid de­mand of im­ported medicines and health prod­ucts in the do­mes­tic mar­ket. We hope more premium prod­ucts from abroad could en­ter the China mar­ket and pro­vide more ben­e­fits to con­sumers,” Meng said.

... in the long term, the im­pact will be trans­ferred to the lo­cal phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pa­nies in the US.”

Shi Lichen, in­dus­try an­a­lyst


A tech­ni­cian shows how to use 3D med­i­cal equip­ment dur­ing an in­dus­try expo ear­lier this month in Shang­hai.

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