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Investments in Pharmaceuticals Before and After TRIPS

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  • Margaret Kyle
  • Anita McGahan

Abstract

We examine the relationship between patent protection for pharmaceuticals and investment in development of new drugs. Patent protection has increased around the world as a consequence of the TRIPS Agreement, which specifies minimum levels of intellectual property protection for members of the World Trade Organization. It is generally argued that patents are critical for pharmaceutical research efforts, and so greater patent protection in developing and least-developed countries might result in greater effort by pharmaceutical firms to develop drugs that are especially needed in those countries. Since patents also have the potential to reduce access to treatments through higher prices, it is imperative to assess whether the benefits of increased incentives have materialized in research on diseases that particularly affect the poor. We find that patent protection is associated with increases in research and development (R&D) effort when adopted in high income countries. However, the introduction of patents in developing countries has not been followed by greater investment. Particularly for diseases that primarily affect the poorest countries, our results suggest that alternative mechanisms for inducing R&D may be more appropriate than patents.

Suggested Citation

  • Margaret Kyle & Anita McGahan, 2009. "Investments in Pharmaceuticals Before and After TRIPS," NBER Working Papers 15468, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:15468
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Iain M. Cockburn & Jean O. Lanjouw & Mark Schankerman, 2016. "Patents and the Global Diffusion of New Drugs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(1), pages 136-164, January.
    2. Mark Duggan & Craig Garthwaite & Aparajita Goyal, 2016. "The Market Impacts of Pharmaceutical Product Patents in Developing Countries: Evidence from India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(1), pages 99-135, January.
    3. repec:eee:jhecon:v:54:y:2017:i:c:p:56-65 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Roger Bate & Ginger Zhe Jin & Aparna Mathur & Amir Attaran, 2014. "Poor Quality Drugs and Global Trade: A Pilot Study," NBER Working Papers 20469, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Kamal Saggi, 2016. "Trade, Intellectual Property Rights, and the World Trade Organization," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 16-00014, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
    6. Pierre Dubois & Olivier de Mouzon & Fiona Scott-Morton & Paul Seabright, 2015. "Market size and pharmaceutical innovation," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 46(4), pages 844-871, October.
    7. Emmanuelle Auriol & Sara Biancini & Rodrigo Paillacar, 2013. "Universal Intellectual Property Rights: Too Much of a Good Thing?," CESifo Working Paper Series 4292, CESifo Group Munich.
    8. Anna-Maria Aksan, 2013. "Appropriate Health R&D and Intellectual Property Rights Reform in Developing Countries," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 80(319), pages 475-495, July.
    9. OKADA, Yoshimi & NAGAOKA, Sadao, 2016. "Global spread of pharmaceutical patent protections: micro evidence from the international equivalents of the drug patents in Japan," IIR Working Paper 16-07, Institute of Innovation Research, Hitotsubashi University.
    10. Carliss Y. Baldwin & Joachim Henkel, 2015. "Modularity and intellectual property protection," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(11), pages 1637-1655, November.
    11. Chatterjee, Chirantan & Kubo, Kensuke & Pingali, Viswanath, 2015. "The consumer welfare implications of governmental policies and firm strategy in markets for medicines," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 255-273.
    12. Fabio Montobbio & Annalisa Primi & Valerio Sterzi, 2015. "IPRs and International Knowledge Flows: Evidence from Six Large Emerging Countries," Tijdschrift voor Economische en Sociale Geografie, Royal Dutch Geographical Society KNAG, vol. 106(2), pages 187-204, April.
    13. Gao, Wenlian & Chou, Julia, 2015. "Innovation efficiency, global diversification, and firm value," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 278-298.
    14. Heidi L. Williams, 2016. "Intellectual Property Rights and Innovation: Evidence from Health Care Markets," Innovation Policy and the Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(1), pages 53-87.
    15. repec:eee:respol:v:47:y:2018:i:2:p:440-461 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Auriol, Emmanuelle & Biancini, Sara & Paillacar, Rodrigo, 2015. "Intellectual Property Rights Protection and Trade," CEPR Discussion Papers 10602, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    17. Margaret Kyle & Yi Qian, 2014. "Intellectual Property Rights and Access to Innovation: Evidence from TRIPS," NBER Working Papers 20799, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Loitongbam, Bishwanjit Singh, 2016. "Globalization and Innovation in the Indian Pharmaceutical Industry," MPRA Paper 75925, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 27 May 2016.
    19. Joel Blit & Mauricio Zelaya, "undated". "The impact of patent protection on R&D. Evidence using export markets," Working Papers 17010, University of Waterloo, Department of Economics.
    20. Shahnawaz Sheikh, 2012. "The Optimal Timing of Compulsory Licensing: A Story of Thailand's Winter of Discontent," Global Economy Journal, De Gruyter, vol. 12(4), pages 1-19, December.
    21. IIZUKA Toshiaki & UCHIDA Gyo, 2016. "Promoting Innovation in Small Markets: Evidence from the market for rare and intractable diseases," Discussion papers 16036, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
    22. repec:eee:pubeco:v:156:y:2017:i:c:p:185-199 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F13 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade Policy; International Trade Organizations
    • I11 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Analysis of Health Care Markets
    • L65 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Manufacturing - - - Chemicals; Rubber; Drugs; Biotechnology; Plastics
    • O34 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Intellectual Property and Intellectual Capital

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