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CMA secures supply and price commitment for six cancer drugs

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Aspen has committed not to charge more for its six generic cancer drugs for the next 10 years in the UK, according to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

The CMA also clarified that “although these commitments were offered while the UK was a part of the European Union” they remain “legally binding”.

It added: “The CMA has now assisted the NHS to secure binding undertakings from Aspen, under the law of England and Wales, which enshrine the UK elements of the commitments and are enforceable by UK courts, including in relation to the supply of these drugs in Northern Ireland and Scotland.”

This allows NHS to monitor and ensure compliance by Aspen following the UK’s exit from the EU.

In 2017, the European Commission began an investigation into Aspen over concerns that the company had engaged in excessive pricing for 6 off-patent cancer medicines.

CMA said: “Last year the European Commission accepted commitments by Aspen to reduce prices for the 6 medicines to address these concerns. As a result, Aspen reduced its prices across Europe – including in the UK – by an average of approximately 73 per cent.”

“In addition, Aspen guaranteed the supply of the 6 cancer medicines for a period of 5 years, and, for an additional 5-year period, will either continue to supply or make its marketing authorisation available to other suppliers. This means that over the 10-year period, Aspen cannot charge more than the price set out in the commitments.”

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