Iran: Outbound medicinal smuggling raising concerns, debates

Financial Tribune – The good quality of Iranian drugs, besides their cheap prices, is the cause behind their smuggling to neighboring countries 

Outbound smuggling of pharmaceuticals to neighboring countries has provoked ongoing debates over the past few months.

Professionals in the fields of food and medicines believe outbound smuggling has resulted in the shortage of medication in border towns.

Government Spokesman Ali Rabiei recently said pharmaceuticals’ outbound smuggling accounts for less than 8% of the total drug market.

“Smuggling medication inside suitcase by passengers is highly unlikely. Passengers are only allowed to travel with reasonable quantities of medication and need to declare the amount they need to customs bureaus,” he was quoted as saying by Iran Chamber of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture’s news outlet.

Morteza Khatami, deputy chairman of Majlis Health Commission, said low prices of medication in the country, which are at times eight times cheaper than those in the neighboring countries have paved the way for outbound smuggling.