The US can no longer even make vitamin C or aspirin any more, or 80% of their antibiotics. Something like 90% of the starting chemicals for essential US medicines are made in Chinese factories. And there aren’t many alternatives — fully 70% of competing products from India start with chemicals from China too. And now Chinese companies are shifting up into generic drugs as well.
The West, asleep, let the takeover happen. Western companies were driven out of business trying to compete with Chinese companies which were are subsidized by the CCP. But we were happy to take the cheaper drugs. That was, until we discovered what huge leverage we have given China. It’s a
As Gibson points out — personnel of the US Navy in the South China Sea are thus “dependent on their adversary for their medicine.”
Azithromycin (the antibiotic in the favourite Coronavirus treatment trio) is made in China. So is propofol which is used with ventilators.
December last year:
Doug Palmer and Finbarr Bermingham, South China Morning Post
A watchdog report last month by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission and a recent congressional hearing warn that China hopes of surpassing the United States as the world’s biggest producer of pharmaceutical products.
Last year, China accounted for 95 percent of U.S. imports of ibuprofen, 91 percent of U.S. imports of hydrocortisone, 70 percent of U.S. imports of acetaminophen, 40 to 45 percent of U.S. imports of penicillin and 40 percent of U.S. imports of heparin, according to Commerce Department data. In all, 80 percent of the U.S. supply of antibiotics are made in China.
A Chinese Professor candidly explains the trade imbalances:
“We are at the mercy of others when it comes to computer chips, but we are the world’s largest exporter of raw materials for vitamins and antibiotics,” Li Daokui, a professor of economics at Tsinghua University, said in March 2019 while speaking at the National People’s Conference.
“Should we reduce the exports, the medical systems of some western countries will not run well,” he added.
We wouldn’t let China make our submarines, yet we allow it to control our medicines?
The drug shortages were already happening before Coronavirus:
Rosemary Gibson, The American Conservative
China’s cartels fueled by government subsidies undercut U.S. and other companies, driving them out of business. Western firms aren’t competing against Chinese companies. They are competing against the Chinese government.
China is moving up the value chain and makes 10 percent of the generic drugs in the U.S.
India has a very large generic drug industry, it depends on China for 70 percent of the chemical starting materials to make drugs…
There’s a pattern here of faulty goods:
Rocket Fuel in Generic Drugs
This testimony triggered a spellbinding account by a commissioner, a retired Army colonel with a distinguished record of military service. He talked about his three different blood pressure medicines whose key ingredients were made in China and contained rocket fuel. If he was getting contaminated drugs, active duty military people were probably getting them too, he opined.
The retired Army colonel was one of millions of Americans whose blood pressure medicines were contaminated with carcinogens. In July 2018, the FDA announced the first of many recalls. While many manufacturers recalled their products, the most troubling was the manufacturer in China whose active ingredient contained more than 200 times the acceptable limit of the rocket fuel carcinogen, per pill. Even worse, the company knew its product did not meet U.S. standards but sold it anyway.
Make no mistake, the United States faces an existential threat posed by China’s control over the global supply of the ingredients and chemical materials to manufacture critical drugs. In the hands of an adversary, medicines can be weaponized. They can be made with lethal contaminants or sold without any real medicine in them, rendering them ineffective.
Zhejiang Huahai Pharmaceutical (ZHP), producer of the contaminated valsartan, disclosed in a 2018 annual report that it had received $44.4 million (312 million yuan) in government subsidies. Over the first half of this year, it had received an additional 92 million yuan in state funding.
Doctors need to check those supplies are what they think they are:
A number of hospitals are having to test certain medicines because physicians see that there’s just something not working,” stated Gibson.
Meanwhile Coronavirus tests sent to Slovakia were so inaccurate they should be thrown in the river…
The 1.2 million Chinese antibody tests that the Slovak government bought from local middlemen for 15 million euros ($16 million) are inaccurate and unable to detect Covid-19 in its early stages, according to Prime Minister Igor Matovic, who only took office last month. “We have a ton and no use for them,” he said. They should “just be thrown straight into the Danube.”
On Saturday, the Dutch health ministry announced it had recalled 600,000 face masks. The equipment had arrived from a Chinese manufacturer on 21 March, and had already been distributed to front-line medical teams.
Dutch officials said that the masks did not fit and that their filters did not work as intended, even though they had a quality certificate….
Spain’s government encountered similar problems with testing kits ordered from a Chinese company.
It announced it had bought hundreds of thousands of tests to combat the virus, but revealed in the following days that nearly 60,000 could not accurately determine if a patient had the virus.
Not paying attention for the last 20 years:
Robert Krychik, Breitbart
“Nobody [in politics] did anything about it,” lamented Gibson. “This has been going on for almost 20 years. In fact, no one wanted to even expose it. That’s why it took so long to figure this out and to put it out there, to reveal our dependence. It’s really quite remarkable. The American public’s been thrown under the bus.”
Mansour asked why American politicians allowed domestic manufacturing of medicines and medical supplies to be outsourced to China.
Gibson replied, “There was country-of-origin legislation introduced in Congress around 2008 that would require companies to state on their packages where their product is made, and it was killed immediately. So I asked someone in the industry, someone who worked there for more than 30 years, ‘So, what’s going on here?’ and this person said, ‘Well, the industry thought it probably wouldn’t be good for business if their customers knew where their medicines were coming from.’”
Gibson continued, “Our military is dependent on China. So the young men and women in the South China Sea on those aircraft carriers, they’re dependent on their adversary for their medicine.
We know if the squid in the supermarket was caught in New Zealand and packed in China, but we don’t know where the drugs in the asthma puffer our children use were produced.
It’s probably the same story in Australia except foggier. We don’t even know where the starting materials from our drugs come from: “These medicines are then imported into Australia after journeying around the world.” The report says it is a “significant problem” that there is no public information on the origin of the critical ingredients because drug companies consider such information to be proprietary. It is difficult, therefore, to even assess the resilience of Australia’s medicine supply chain. — Phillip Coorey, AFR, Feb 2020
It’s probably the same story in Australia except foggier. We don’t even know where the starting materials from our drugs come from:
“These medicines are then imported into Australia after journeying around the world.”
The report says it is a “significant problem” that there is no public information on the origin of the critical ingredients because drug companies consider such information to be proprietary. It is difficult, therefore, to even assess the resilience of Australia’s medicine supply chain.
— Phillip Coorey, AFR, Feb 2020
Rosemary Gibson wrote China Rx: Exposing the Risks of America’s Dependence on China for Medicine.
h/t Pat (where is he?!) Cynic of Ayr, David E.