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Argentina: After 5 years, CNDC revives Farmacity file

 |  April 16, 2018

Farmacity, a company owned by cabinet member Mario Quintana, could be allowed to operate in the province of Buenos Aires, pending the opinion of Interim Attorney General Eduardo Casal and further ratification by the Supreme Court, in a case that may decide which pharmacies owned by private companies could operate in the territory of Buenos Aires.

The current law in the province allows, since 1987, the opening of pharmacies owned by single proprietors, but not by corporations such as Farmacity, as pharmacies were seen not as businesses, but rather as “a public service, an extension of the health system.” Farmacity has challenged this determination, beginning in 2012, until reaching the Supreme Court.

Mario Quintana announced that he will sell his shares in Farmacity in order to “avoid an eventual conflict of interest” with the company’s possible arrival to the country’s most populous province. However, provincial deputy Lisandro Bonelli has accused the Attorney General of yielding to pressure from Quintana.

With this case, the National Commission for the Defense of Competition (CNDC) opted to reopen the file that had been frozen 5 years ago on Farmacity, considering that the evidence presented by the pharmaceutical company was sufficient. For this reason, it had decided to charge the Argentine Pharmaceutical Confederation (COFA) and the Argentine Federation Pharmacy Chambers for discriminatory behaviors denounced by Farmacity.
Full Content: La Arena

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