EU Conduct Raid on Ranbaxy French Unit

European Union has conducted a raid on the French unit of Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd, India’s biggest drug maker and brand name pharmaceutical companies.

“We had a visit yesterday and were cooperating with the European Commission,” Anne Baille, Managing Director of Puteaux, France-based Ranbaxy Pharmacie Generiques was quoted as saying bye media.

Spokesman for firms said that the commission also conducted surprise visits to Sanofi-Aventis SA, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries and a Novartis AG unit.

The commission, the EUs antitrust regulator, said that the companies may have abused their dominant market positions or engaged in “restrictive business practices”.

With this, drug makers offices have been visited thrice since the EU initiated an investigation into the pharmaceutical industry in January 2008.

The EU has focused on whether drug makers misuse patents and lawsuit settlements to keep less-expensive generic medicines off the market. The Brussels-based commission said in a report in July that companies use a variety of techniques to delay the introduction of generics “for as long as possible”.

The spokesman of Tokyo-based Daiichi Sankyo Co, Japans third-largest drug maker having a controlling stake in Ranbaxy was not able to immediately comment.

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