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Strategic Responses to Parallel Trade

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  • Margaret K. Kyle

Abstract

This paper examines how pharmaceutical firms have responded to changes in intellectual property rights and trade barriers that legalized "parallel imports" within the European Union. The threat of arbitrage by parallel traders reduces the ability of firms to price discriminate across countries. Due to regulations on price and antitrust law on rationing supply, pharmaceutical firms may rely on non-price responses. Such responses include differentiation of products across countries and selective "culling" of product lines to reduce arbitrage opportunities, as well as raising arbitrageurs' costs through choice of packaging. Using a dataset of drug prices and sales from 1993-2004 covering 30 countries, I find evidence that the behavior of pharmaceutical firms in the EU with respect to their product portfolios is consistent with attempts to reduce parallel trade. This may at least partially explain why parallel trade has not yet resulted in significant price convergence across EU countries. Accounting for non-price strategic responses may therefore be important in assessing the welfare effects of parallel imports.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12968.

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Date of creation: Mar 2007
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Publication status: published as Kyle, Margaret (2011) "Strategic Responses to Parallel Trade," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy: Vol. 11: Iss. 2 (Advances), Article 2.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12968

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Cited by:
  1. Mejer, Malwina & van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie, Bruno, 2009. "Economic incongruities in the European patent system," CEPR Discussion Papers 7142, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Granlund, David, 2012. "The effect of pharmacies’ right to negotiate discounts on the market share of parallel imported pharmaceuticals," HUI Working Papers 75, HUI Research.
  3. Granlund, David & Yesim Köksal, Miyase, 2012. "EU Enlargement, Parallel Trade and Price Competition in Pharmaceuticals - What’s to Blame? Derogation or Perception?," HUI Working Papers 59, HUI Research.
  4. Newhouse, Joseph Paul & Berndt, Ernst R., 2010. "Pricing and Reimbursement in U.S. Pharmaceutical Markets," Scholarly Articles 4450127, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
  5. Berndt, Ernst & Dubois, Pierre, 2012. "Impacts of Patent Expiry and Regulatory Policies on Daily Cost of Pharmaceutical Treatments: OECD Countries, 2004-2010," TSE Working Papers 12-283, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
  6. Tomaso Duso & Annika Herr & Moritz Suppliet, 2014. "The Welfare Impact of Parallel Imports: A Structural Approach Applied to the German Market for Oral Anti-diabetics," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1373, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  7. Granlund, David & Yesim Köksal, Miyase, 2011. "Parallel Imports and Mandatory Substitution Reform: A kick or a muff for price competition in pharmaceuticals," Working Papers in Economics 496, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  8. Granlund, David & Yesim Köksal, Miyase, 2011. "EU Enlargement, Parallel Trade and Price Competition in Pharmaceuticals. What's blame? Derogation or perception?," Working Papers in Economics 499, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  9. Granlund, David & Köksal, Miyase Yesim, 2011. "Parallel Imports and Mandatory Substitution Reform - A Kick or A Muff for Price Competition in Pharmaceuticals?," HUI Working Papers 49, HUI Research.
  10. Shen Guo & Bin Hu & Hai Zhong, 2013. "Impact of parallel trade on pharmaceutical firm’s profits: rise or fall?," The European Journal of Health Economics, Springer, vol. 14(2), pages 345-355, April.
  11. Nebibe Varol & Joan Costa-i-Font & Alistair McGuire, 2011. "Explaining Early Adoption on New Medicines: Regulation, Innovation and Scale," CESifo Working Paper Series 3459, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Pamina Koenig & Megan Macgarvie, 2009. "Regulatory policy and the location of bio-pharmaceutical FDI in Europe," PSE Working Papers halshs-00566800, HAL.
  13. Granlund, David & Yesim Köksal, Miyase, 2011. "EU Enlargement, Parallel Trade and Price Competition in Pharmaceuticals - What’s to Blame? Derogation or Perception?," UmeÃ¥ Economic Studies 831, Umeå University, Department of Economics.
  14. repec:hal:wpaper:halshs-00566800 is not listed on IDEAS

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