Zurab Azarashvili: Besides profit maximization, business should have significant standpoint implying social responsibility
“Besides profit maximization, business should have significant standpoint implying social responsibility. Market dominance of several holding companies should not cause damage of market and our citizens through agreement between companies”, - stated Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from the Occupied Territories, Labor, Health and Social Affairs of Georgia, Zurab Azarashvili after the meeting of the Government.
The Minister underlined, that increased accessibility of population to the medicines represents stated priority for the Government and the State will not allow artificial price increase of the medicines.
“During the very first week of setting reference prices, starting from February 15, some companies decided that they could increase prices of the medicines for which upper price limit was not set, or had been sold at lower prices before setting reference prices.
This is intolerable and unacceptable for us. That’s why we reacted immediately and the prices promptly got back to initial benchmark”, - stated Zurab Azarashvili.
According to the Minister, Competition Agency correspondingly responded to this fact and the first outline of real state of affairs will be in place in several weeks.
“The companies provide various explanation regarding price increase. Some say it happened accidentally, some say that the system itself made the medicines more expensive technically, and once it was identified they lowered prices. Such attitude is unacceptable. I would like the companies have the same responsible attitude towards citizens as we have and will demonstrate more social responsibility in dealing with this issue”, - stated Zurab Azarashvili.
As stated by Zurab Azarashvili, the Ministry has already prepared package of legislative changes necessary for better regulation of quality and budget expenditures of pharmaceutical sector and the Ministry is ready to present the package to the Parliament of Georgia shortly.