Marathon Group President Alexander Vinokurov participated in a panel discussion titled The Three Dimensions of Healthcare Efficiency that took place on 2 June during the St. Petersburg international economic forum. The topic of discussion was the expectations of all stakeholders from the appearance of new investors in the pharmaceutical industry.
Alexander Vinokurov said that in the future, joint efforts by central government and business could solve the problem of providing the country with the innovative medications that require long-term cycles of development, testing, release, and launch into mass production.
The Marathon Group, for instance, continuously invests in the development and production of medications to fight controllable infections, and the first step on the path of implementing that strategy was the acquisition of an advanced facility for producing antibacterial therapy products – Sintez (Kurgan) – whose key advantage is that it handles the complete antibiotics production cycle from raw ingredients to finished product.
The Marathon Group's second step is to acquire a controlling interest in the Fort plant, which is one of Russia's most advanced companies specializing in immunobiological products. Making vaccines against the main types of controllable infections available in Russia is a critical strategic issue requiring substantial investment with lengthy payback periods. A public-private partnership mechanism is ideally suited for projects such as these. Government sets the game rules and places purchase orders that guarantee an investment return, while business invests the money and puts efficient production in place.
Alexander Vinokurov did not agree with some speakers who feared the arrival of new investors in the industry could lead to higher prices for medications. He believes healthy competition and efforts by government regulators in the industry will guarantee prices remain affordable.