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Parliamentary questions
14 February 2017
Question for written answer
to the Commission
Rule 130
Sotirios Zarianopoulos (NI)

 Subject:  Escalation in the deregulation of the market in pharmaceutical products

As part of the third memorandum and on the basis of the OECD Toolkit, the Commission and the Greek Government are jointly escalating the deregulation of the market in pharmaceutical products on the grounds that this will liberate entrepreneurial activity.

They have decided to grant pharmacy licences to non-pharmacists, thereby putting business interests even before public health. Business groups will henceforth be able to create commercial chains of pharmacies and monopolise the market, at the expense of small self-employed pharmacists who have been affected by a series of other measures such as the deregulation of pharmacy opening hours, the possibility of granting multiple licences to pharmacists and non-pharmacists, the possibility for supermarkets to sell non-prescription drugs, hikes in taxation, etc.

The prices of pharmaceutical products which are already high will soar with further monopolisation, and this will force thousands of patients to discontinue their treatment. At the same time, the sole criterion governing the prices, quality and appropriateness of medicines will be whether they generate profits for those who trade in health and pharmaceutical products rather than public health.

In view of the above, will the Commission say where it stands on the following questions:
the fact that the granting of pharmacy licences to non-pharmacists will lead to hundreds of self-employed pharmacists being thrown out of work;
the fact that the monopolisation of the market in the interests of business profits will pose a risk to public health?
Original language of question: EL 
Last updated: 7 March 2017Legal notice