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    CUSTOMS TO PUT BARRIER TO COUNTERFEIT MEDICINES

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    MOSCOW, February 24, 2004 (RIA Novosti) - The Union of Professional Pharmaceutical Organisations has provided customs officials with information that will help them trace counterfeit medicines, reports the press service of Russia's State Customs Committee (SCC).

    "Yesterday, Union officials provided Elchin Safarov, chief of the SCC federal customs revenues department, with a list of one thousand medicines and information ranging from source nations to producers' prices," the press service said in a statement.

    Pharmaceutical and customs officials discussed cooperation against lowering the customs value of and against illegal imports of pharmaceuticals through off-shore and "fugitive" companies. Delinquent businessmen use these schemes to lower the customs value of medicines 2- to 5-fold.

    Moreover, counterfeit and overdue drugs are mixed with legitimate shipments and are thereby imported to Russia, reads the statement.

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