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China bans officials taking gifts from drug firms
March 28, 2007 / 1:29 PM / 11 years ago

China bans officials taking gifts from drug firms

BEIJING, March 28 (Reuters) - Officials who work for China’s drug watchdog have been banned from taking gifts from pharmaceutical companies, state media said on Wednesday, as part of government efforts to clean up the sector.

"Officials are no longer allowed to take part in banquets, recreation and tourism activities which may influence the fairness of procedures," the official Xinhua news agency added.

"Officials may not accept lecture fees, consultant fees, expensive gifts and securities offered by drug companies and intermediate agencies," it added, citing a directive from the State Food and Drug administration.

The use of fake and poor-quality products has killed dozens of people in China in recent years and has sparked widespread public fury about food and drug safety.

Chinese media have blamed the frequent scandals on businesses obsessed with making profits and on lax official supervision.

In February the government forbade officials to invest in medical companies.

The moves follow the sacking of a former drug watchdog head on suspicion of taking bribes.

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