Pharmaceutical CEO: Cancer Drug Is Only For Westerners Who Can Afford It

Bayer CEO Marijn Dekkers said that his company’s drug isn’t for poor people.

“We did not develop this medicine for Indians…we developed it for western patients who can afford it,” he said back in December. The quote is quickly making its way across Indian news outlets.

The comment was in response to a decision by an Indian patent court that granted a compulsory license to a local company to reproduce Bayer’s drug. Under Indian patent laws, if a product is not available locally at a reasonable cost, other companies may apply for licenses to reproduce those products at a more affordable price. Nexavar costs an estimated $69,000 for a full year of treatment in India, 41 times the country’s annual per capita income.