Friday, August 11, 2006

US ROK FTA - Will Kim Jong-il make the list

I commented a couple weeks ago on how the US FTA demands in relation Korea's Pharma changes are partly a concern over public health, not just some "evil" greed mechanism as some say. Now take into account this news story a couple days ago:

Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency booked four people including a North Korean defector identified as Lee (44)...on charges of producing and selling illegal pharmaceuticals concocted by mixing erectile dysfunction drugs and medicinal herbs. 

Police said the scammers built a food factory in February last year in Songpa-gu, Seoul where they made three kinds of unlicensed health products by mixing herbs with Tadalafil, the active ingredient in impotence drug Cialis...

Lee worked as a bodyguard for Kim Jong-il for 10 years before fleeing the North in 2000...Taking advantage of this background, he engaged in false advertising by describing the drug as “the miracle cure even Kim Jong-il takes”

I wonder if such a drug would be included under Korea's positive list system under debate right now as part of the FTA. It would be officially submitted as "herbal" or "traditional medicine". That would be at least until something like this was found out. Again, one of the troubling things about the proposed positive list system is its openness to fraud.


Post a Comment

<< Home