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China Pharma and Biotech Market Update - Oct 27, 2010

|Includes: SHP, Tongjitang Chinese Medicines Company (TCM)
News of import: Ten local and MNC biopharmaceutical enterprises, including Novartis and GlaxoSmithKline, are the beneficiaries of a new pilot program for inspection and quarantine of bio-materials. The Shanghai Customs, Immigration and Quarantine division has opened a special channel which is expected to drop processing times from 20 working days to 7 working days.

Click on this week's SOURCE Snapshot to see recent volumes and values of drugs and APIs Novartis is importing. GBI SOURCE users can search for any manufacturer or product import volumes/values in the Imports section.

In other customs-related news, the SFDA last week re-affirmed that any drug or device intended for sale and distribution in China must obtain relevant licenses - the warning was likely a response to a recent spate of ADR's involving a counterfeit medication for macular degeneration. (The returns on stashing in the luggage even just a few vials of high priced innovative pharmaceuticals, such as newer ophthalmic meds - which are used in tiny but expensive doses, can be a tempting prospect for some.)

On the R&D front, Xian-Janssen has announced plans to intensify research efforts focusing on treatment areas including cancer, tuberculosis, HCV, and cerebrovascular and urological diseases over the next 8-10 years with the hope of putting over 20 new products into the pipeline. Local player Livzon Pharmaceutical signed an RMB 2 billion agreement to build infrastructure in Zhuhai and Shijiazhuangyiling Pharmaceutical cut the ribbon on an academic lab facility in their hometown of Shijiazhuang, where the locals presumably have no problem pronouncing the company's name. See Volume 32 of the China Pharmaceutical & Biotechnology Review for more on R&D investments in China. GBI SOURCE users will find the article in the Special Reports section.

As part of the ongoing attempt to equalize resources and patient flows across hospital systems, a total of 117 Chinese hospitals signed a cooperation agreement last week to join a consortium which offers inpatients rapid and expedited transfers (from lower level to higher level) facilities within the network. It is hoped that this will enhance patients' confidence in first seeking treatment at smaller hospitals and clinics. This is a long (and important) uphill battle for China.

On the financial front, Tongjitang Chinese Medicines Company has, yet again, announced plans to delist from the NYSE. Will this time be the one? Tongjitang has been making delisting noises for over two years. To refresh your memory, see "Taking Back Tongjitang" in the GBI SOURCE Special Reports section . Moving in the other direction, ShangPharma completed its US IPO last week, complete with ringing of the NYSE opening bell by the company's CEO. Also last week, China's state council approved a merger between Sinopharm and CNSC, a state-owned trading company; China Resources launched a health and beauty retail chain store (VivoPlus) in Hong Kong; and Hong Kong's Secretary of Food & Health paid an official visit to Shanghai, visiting many of the city's healthcare officials and medical sites. It was not clear if the Secretary was able to visit Shanghai's single most important healthcare and pharmaceutical site:

Disclosure: No positions

Disclosure: No positions