Stronger monopolies on medicines mean higher future prices
Pharmaceutical companies already have 20 years of patents for monopoly higher prices on new medicines before cheaper versions become available.
The TPP will provide stronger monopoly rights for the costly biologic medicines used to treat cancer and other serious illnesses that cost thousands of dollars per treatment.
The TPP gives an extra three years of data protection rights for biologic medicines. While Australian law on five years data protection will not change, the TPP requires "other measures" to deliver an extra three years of monopoly, a total of eight years.
Each year of delay in the availability of cheaper biologic medicines could cost the Australian government hundreds of millions of dollars, creating pressure for higher prices at the chemist.