India will continue to allow 100% Foreign Direct Investment for new ventures in the pharma sector. The decision was taken at a high level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh to discuss the FDI policy in drugs and pharmaceutical sector held in New Delhi last night. An official release said, the move will facilitate addition of manufacturing capacities, technology acquisition and development of the pharma sector in the country.

However, in case of existing ventures in the pharma sector, FDI will be allowed for a period of six months after approval from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board, FIPB. It was also decided that the Competition Commission of India will be strengthened for effective oversight on mergers and acquisitions to ensure that there is a balance between public health concerns and attracting FDI in the pharma sector.

The meeting was attended by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherji, Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, Commerce Minister Anand Sharma, Pharmaceutical and Chemical Minister MK Alagiri besides Deputy Chairman Planning Commission Dr Montek Singh Ahulwalia.

Source: All India Radio (11-OCT-11)

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