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Addressing the North-South Divide in Pharmaceutical Counterfeiting

Daniel R. Cahoy

Smeal College of Business

March 1, 2007

Wake Forest Intellectual Property Law Journal Vol. 8, No. 3, 2007

In light of the stakes involved, greater attention is being directed to the global effort to combat pharmaceutical counterfeiting, and both public and private actors are being called to the fight. The counterfeiting of medical products remains a prominent obstacle to a fully effective health care system in many countries. In order to fine-tune the system, anti-counterfeiting initiatives tend to focus on strengthening technical, informational and legal measures across all nations. But the tendency to maximize the same attributes throughout the world may fail to address fundamental differences in the nature of counterfeiting among countries at different stages of economic development. Significantly, there is evidence that striking distinctions necessitate a more nuanced approach in combating pharmaceutical fakes on a global scale. However, this so-called North-South divide is generally not seriously considered in formulating solutions to the problem. This is an important failure, as an understanding of the factors that influence counterfeiting in respective economic regions is extraordinarily valuable. Solutions that specifically respond to such factors can make far more effective strategies. This article takes a step toward a better understanding of the North-South divide in the context of pharmaceutical counterfeiting. It considers the most important influences in terms of economic actors and suggests that an important tool for addressing the divide may exist in incentive mechanisms for private anti-counterfeiting efforts.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 26

Keywords: counterfeiting, pharmaceutical, patent, trademark, drug

JEL Classification: K33, K39

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Date posted: September 23, 2010  

Suggested Citation

Cahoy, Daniel R., Addressing the North-South Divide in Pharmaceutical Counterfeiting (March 1, 2007). Wake Forest Intellectual Property Law Journal Vol. 8, No. 3, 2007. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1680342

Contact Information

Daniel R. Cahoy (Contact Author)
Smeal College of Business ( email )
310 Business Building
University Park, PA 16802
United States
814-865-6205 (Phone)
814-865-6284 (Fax)
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