Ministry aims to boost market share of generic drugs


Health minister Yasuhisa Shiozaki says the government intends to set a new target for the share of generic drugs in Japan.

The health ministry is planning to make revisions to its road map for the promotion of such lower-priced drugs, including a hike of the current target of at least 60 percent at the end of fiscal 2017.

Shiozaki spoke of the generic drug use target at Tuesday’s meeting of the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy, where private-sector members proposed raising the target to 80 to 90 percent, like the levels in Europe and the United States.

The diffusion rate of generic drugs in Japan stood at only 46.9 percent as of September 2013.

Since greater use of generic drugs will help curb medical expenses, the Fiscal System Council of the Finance Ministry has called for achieving the target ahead of schedule, or raising the target.