Vector Department /
14 August 2014Americas

Merck fined $1.8m for “anticompetitive” generic drug scheme

A Brazilian antitrust watchdog is fining German pharmaceutical company Merck $1.8 million for an alleged conspiracy to stop medicine distributors from working with generic drug makers.

Brazil’s Administrative Council for Economic Defence (CADE) ordered Merck to pay the BRL 4.295 million fine for forming a “cartel” with domestic units of large pharmaceutical companies.

According to The Wall Street Journal’s Pharmalot blog, in 1999, Merck met pharmaceutical companies including Bayer; Bristol-Myers Squibb; the now Pfizer-owned Wyeth; Boehringer Ingelheim; Eli Lilly; Roche; Glaxo Wellcome, which is now a part of GlaxoSmithKline; and Johnson and Johnson.

Merck’s agreement with the drug makers could hamper the entry of generic medicines into Brazil, harming the market and consumers, a statement on the CADE website said.

“The anticompetitive effects in practice are clear,” said CADE commissioner Alessandro Octaviani, who characterised the meeting as an attempt to boycott the Brazilian generics market.

Merck did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

Already registered?

Login to your account

To request a FREE 2-week trial subscription, please signup.
NOTE - this can take up to 48hrs to be approved.

Two Weeks Free Trial

For multi-user price options, or to check if your company has an existing subscription that we can add you to for FREE, please email Adrian Tapping at