Glaxo CEO Says European Drug-Price Approval Delays Hurt Sales

GlaxoSmithKline Plc and other drugmakers are “losing between one or two years” of potential sales because of delays in reaching pricing agreements in some European countries, said Andrew Witty, the company’s chief executive.

The European Union’s 27 governments must each authorize medicines before they can go on sale in their individual countries. Long delays can eat into the limited time drugmakers have to exclusively sell the medicines they develop.

Witty said the delays can add as much as “400 days” on top of a safety authorization from the European Medicines Agency. He called for the European Commission to set “a framework of how quickly” governments should approve medicines.

Even so, he said pharmaceutical companies and regulators all oppose a single European price.

To contact the reporter on this story: Aoife White in Brussels at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at

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