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China takes new steps to promote TCM overseas (2)

By Yin Xiaoyu (People's Daily Overseas Edition)

14:15, April 28, 2012

Series of polices introduced to break trade barriers

The trade in TCM services faces many policies and technical barriers overseas. TCM is marketed solely as dietary supplements or non-medicinal treatments in much of Europe. Furthermore, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) required all TCM products to undergo a registration process before they enter the European market starting in 2011, making it more difficult for TCM to penetrate into the European medicine market.

Di’ao Xin Xue Kang, a Chinese herbal medicine developed by the Chengdu Di’ao Pharmaceutical Group for treating myocardial ischemia, was recently licensed for sale in the European Union, making it the first Chinese therapeutic drug to receive marketing authorization in the Western market.

Wang said that preferential fiscal and tax policies should be introduced to promote the trade in TCM services. Major TCM companies that are identified as high-tech enterprises should enjoy a reduced corporate income tax rate of 15 percent according to the tax law and related regulations. The tax on TCM companies’ business income from cultivating herbal medicines and raising poultry and livestock should be reduced or abolished. Furthermore, the country should provide effective financial support to the promotion of TCM products, and policy banks should actively provide credit support for the export of TCM products.

Finding alternatives to valuable TCM ingredients is a difficult process

TCM production unavoidably involves certain rare and endangered plants and animals as well as scarce minerals, including natural bezoars and bear bile. Some TCM ingredients such as rhino horns have been prohibited under international wildlife protection agreements.

Wang said that China has attached great importance to finding alternatives to valuable TCM ingredients, and has enhanced research and spent heavily in this regard. However, as most valuable medicinal herbs themselves are like compounded prescriptions and will lose their original effectiveness if their chemical structure is changed, making it a long and difficult process to find their alternatives. Researchers once tried to substitute artificial bezoars for natural bezoars, but the experiment turned out to be a failure. In addition, despite many years of research and moderate progress, artificial musk is still unable to substitute for natural musk in TCM production.

Read the Chinese version at

【1】 【2】


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