Docs reportedly get smuggled cancer drugs in Pakistan bazaar

Some doctors and patients in Pakistan are now reportedly getting smuggled drugs in a special market set up in the famous Karkhano bazaar in Peshawar. The report illustrates the difficulty of securing the pharma supply chain throughout the world. The drugs are believed to be manufactured in the U.S., Europe and India and smuggled into Pakistan from Afghanistan, The Express Tribune reports. While erectile dysfunction drugs, like Indian-made generics of Pfizer's ($PFE) Viagra are the most popular, doctors and patients are also picking up things like cancer drugs made in Europe. Officials with Pakistan's domestic drugmaking industry say the drugs undercut their market, but often are expired and may be unsafe or ineffective. "There is no date of manufacture or expiry mentioned on these [smuggled] medicines, which speaks volumes about their quality," Riaz Arshad, an owner of a pharmaceutical company, told The Express Tribune. From fake Avastin in the U.S. to substandard antimalarial drugs in Africa, to fakes in and out of China, the problem with counterfeits has been growing and countries are proposing, adopting, but often rejecting, systems to combat the problem. Story | More