Korea-U.S. Trade Partnership: KORUS FTA: Working Together for Growth and Job Creation
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Benefits by Industry/Sector - Pharmaceuticals



"The FTA will help enhance Korean patients' access to the most effective, innovative cures. I am particularly pleased by the strong protection of intellectual property rights provided in the FTA...

Korea committed to some significant improvements in market access for pharmaceuticals. Further, Korea will enhance intellectual property protection increasing Korean patients' access to the most innovative medicines. This will support ongoing investment in research and development by pharmaceutical companies around the globe."

Billy Tauzin, President and CEO
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America

U.S. Pharmaceutical Industry Supports the KORUS FTA

One of the early issues purported to be a stumbling block in the KORUS FTA negotiations involved pharmaceuticals - including Korean market access and intellectual property protections. All issues, however, were satisfactorily settled, and both the Korean and U.S. pharmaceutical industries now strongly support approval of the trade agreement.

The U.S. pharmaceutical and the medical devices industries stand to realize significant benefits from the KORUS FTA and are satisfied that the following provisions will not only protect their interests, but enhance their ability to market products in Korea. Korea is ranked in the world's top 12 pharmaceutical markets, with annual sales of about $7.9 billion.


  • Contains principles on facilitating high-quality health care and improving access to safe and effective innovative and generic pharmaceutical products, biologics, and medical devices.
  • Includes commitments to ensure fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory treatment for pharmaceutical products and medical devices.
  • Commitment to providing predictability and transparency in the pricing and reimbursement process for pharmaceutical products and medical devices.
  • Agrees to adopt, maintain, and enforce measures to promote ethical business practices by prohibiting improper inducements by pharmaceutical product and medical device manufacturers.
  • Agrees to establish a Medicines and Medical Devices Working Group to provide for continued dialogue between the United States and Korea on emerging health care policy issues.
  • Strengthens intellectual property protections in Korea, which will Korean patients’ access to innovative U.S. medicines.

KORUS FTA - A Common Sense, Job Creating Trade Partnership

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