The Council on Foreign Relations posted an interesting report today on how to improve medicine quality around the world (click here). Unlike the UNODC (click here), which is focusing on assisting nations to criminalize acts of falsification of medicines, CFR is aiming to help national regulatory authorities harmonize practices and prioritize efforts towards that end.
CFR is right that with globalization comes an increasingly complicated drug ingredient sourcing, processing and manufacturing system that is no longer overseen by one national regulator. Even the generally excellent FDA cannot oversee plant production in other nations. CFR is also correct in calling for like-minded nations to move forward with harmonization. Some nations, notably India, are laggards and obstructive even hostile, to international cooperation. Waiting for them to join in with other more responsible regulators would be to wait in vain.
It will be interesting to see if the national drug regulators adopt some of the advice of CFR in their future efforts at harmonization.