Jun 10, 2012 News
Last year, when the government awarded a $311M contract to the New Guyana Pharmaceutical Corporation, importers found that some of the prices put forward by the entity were exorbitant; that the government was paying much more than it should for some of the pharmaceuticals being imported.
They noticed for example that the cream, Ketoconazole, which was imported in 15g and 30g containers, was priced by the importer at $2,000 per tube while the local retailers were offering the cream to the public for $140 and $300, the latter being the retail value.
These items were imported in large quantities and a casual inspection revealed that the importer priced the contract at $50 million more than what it should have been.
Ketoconazole is used to treat fungal infections such as dandruff and athlete’s foot, jock itch and similar ailments.
More recently, an inspection of a shipment of Omeprazole, which is imported in 20 milligram and 28 milligram packets, also found huge price discrepancies.
The importing company, New Guyana Pharmaceutical Corporation, is charging the government as much as six times the retail price of the drug on the local market.
Omeprazole is used in medicine to treat Gastro esophagel reflux disease, gastric and duodenum ulceration and gastritis. Simply put, it treats ulcers and what the ordinary people call ‘burnt stomach’.
A source said that the New Guyana Pharmaceutical Corporation charges $1,909 per tube while International Pharmaceutical Corporation retails the drug at $364 per tube.
Head of International Pharmaceutical Agency, Lloyd Singh, said that he is analyzing the list of imports provided by the New Guyana Pharmaceutical Corporation and that in the coming days he is going to make the disclosures.
Singh said that his company, IPA, has largely been sidelined by the government in preference of its favourite, the New Guyana Pharmaceutical Corporation.
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