Collaboration in the Mexican Pharmaceutical Industry: An Analysis Within the Institutional Framework

Collaboration in the Mexican Pharmaceutical Industry: An Analysis Within the Institutional Framework

José G. Vargas-Hernández, Alma Isela Rodríguez Hernández
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 18
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-5921-4.ch014
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The objective of this chapter is to analyze the collaboration networks of the Mexican pharmaceutical industry from an institutional approach. The pharmaceutical sector at a global level is characterized by a high dynamism in innovation and collaboration. One could say that the high value recorded by the industry is due to this. However, in Mexico, the lack of efficient institutions that ensure the appropriation of profits for investment in research within the industry is not perceived; this situation leads us to the next question, What are the dynamics of collaboration between pharmaceutical companies in Mexico? To answer this question, a database was created that identifies the alliances of the companies belonging to the Canifarma. Finally, a comparison of the number of registrations and patent applications between eight of these companies is made to measure the results of this situation.
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Background Of The Problem

The pharmaceutical sector at a global level has been characterized by its high investment in research and development (R&D) which has made it one of the most innovative. Precisely this - innovation - is the pillar on which the rapid growth of this sector is based (KPMG, 2006, p.6). However, there are a number of factors that threaten the growth of this sector. These threats include counterfeiting (piracy), theft, smuggling, and the alteration or adulteration of pharmaceutical products that represent a loss of billions around the world, representing 10% of world trade (AMECE, 2006).

Another factor, that while not illegal but competing ironically with pharmaceutical laboratories, is known as generic drugs. These types of drugs arise when the patent, document issued by the State granting the exclusive right to use or commercially exploit someone an invention, loses its capacity for protection. The aim of the patent is for laboratories to recover development costs before making a profit, but when the right of exploitation ends, any laboratory can manufacture the drug and its prices decrease. In the United States and the European Union, patent protection is 17 and 10 years respectively, while in Mexico it is 20 years. The alternatives that, according to KPMG (2006), have the laboratories that develop and patent medicines are:

  • 1.

    request for new patents for new applications of a drug that already exists. In this way the life of the patent is lengthened and cannot be used by generic laboratories; and

  • 2.

    on patents that are about to expire, the laboratory itself can enter the generic market and compete with laboratories dedicated to this.

There is also the protection of trademarks and this consists of an authorization granted by the State to individuals the use of a denomination that distinguishes a product for commercial purposes. The right to use a trademark lasts for 10 years. The main difference between patents and trademarks is that trademarks can be renewed for equal periods indefinitely. In Mexico, the sector has to face all these problems, although some of these tend to be acuter than others due to the conditions in the country (KPMG, 2006, p. 5-6).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Collaboration: The action and effect of collaborating to work together with another or other people to carry out a work or achieve an objective.

Network: Organization formed by a set of establishments of the same branch, and sometimes under the same address, which are distributed by several places in a locality or geographical area to provide a service.

Interinstitutional: The coordination of actors, to the interaction of institutions through joint action mechanisms around projects common, to the formulation, construction, and collective execution of programs, projects, and actions that involve initiatives, resources, potentialities, and shared interests.

Pharmaceutical Industry: The pharmaceutical industry is a business sector dedicated to the manufacture, preparation, and commercialization of medicinal chemicals for the treatment and also the prevention of diseases.

Alliance: It is an agreement made by two or more parties to achieve a set of objectives desired by each party independently.

Mexican: From Mexico or relative to this American country.

Institution: Institutions are “the rules of the game” supported by stable, valued, recurring patterns of behavior. As structures or mechanisms of social order, they govern the behavior of a set of individuals within a given community.

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