13 Nov 2011

Pharmac not discussed during Pacific trade talks

9:07 pm on 13 November 2011

The drugs-buying agency Pharmac was not discussed at a breakthrough meeting of countries negotiating a Pacific Rim free trade deal that includes New Zealand.

The nine countries negotiating the TransPacific Partnership agreed at APEC in Honolulu on Sunday to conclude within 12 months a deal eliminating barriers to trade.

New Zealand wants tariff-free entry for agricultural exports into heavily protected TPP markets such as the United States.

But critics say it could come at the expense of Pharmac which is the target of American pharmaceutical companies.