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Parliamentary questions
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19 March 2019
Question for written answer E-001417-19
to the Commission
Rule 130
Elisabetta Gardini (PPE)

 Subject:  Trafficking in counterfeit drugs
 Answer in writing 

Trafficking in counterfeit medicines is an increasingly lucrative black market, even more so than heroin trafficking. According to the WHO, one pharmaceutical drug out of ten is fake; this figure can even be as high as 7 out of 10 in Africa.

In places like Africa, where half of the counterfeit drugs in the world are found, such products are used because they cost less, especially in Burkina Faso, Ghana and Nigeria. The result is that patients get worse or die, and in the past, for example, many children died from a syrup which contained a poisonous dye.

One of the tragic aspects of this is that many thousands of people die from perfectly curable diseases, buying packets that look like the original drugs, but are not.

Investigations in Africa have led to the seizure of 400 tonnes of counterfeit pharmaceutical drugs.

In view of this, can the Commission say:
1. How it can better protect people’s health from these counterfeit medicines, especially in such disadvantaged situations;
2. How it intends to reduce and wipe out the use of these fake products?
Original language of question: IT 
Last updated: 4 April 2019Legal notice