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21 September 2018Asia-Pacific

Australia approves Arrow and Apotex merger

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) announced yesterday that it has approved the merger of generic drugs companies Arrow and Apotex.

Both companies import into and distribute generic prescription and over-the-counter pharmaceuticals in Australia.

The ACCC started a review of the proposed deal in July 2018.

Now that the merger has been approved, the companies will supply around half the market for generic prescription pharmaceuticals to Australian pharmacies, said the ACCC.

Rod Sims, chair of the commission, explained that Arrow and Apotex will still face strong competition from companies such as Mylan and Sandoz, and to a lesser extent from “short range” suppliers such as Generic Health and Pharmacor.

“The ability for pharmacies to pick and choose suppliers for individual generic pharmaceutical products also acts as a competitive constraint,” added Sims.

“A number of smaller generic players are active in the market in supplying pharmacies, and there is the potential for further competition via these smaller players building up a larger portfolio of generic products.”

Sims concluded that although the ACCC contacted independent pharmacies and wholesalers regarding the merger, many were unconcerned about it.

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