British pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline, urged the Kenyan government on Monday to block imports of fake medicines, that account for a third of the country's drugs trade.
GSK's east Africa chief John Musunga said although his firm had no problem with parallel trade -- importation of cheaper products with the intent of charging less than the competitors in the retail market -- the authorities should tight crackdowns.
"There is no contention there, but unfortunately most of those mechanisms lead to the importation of more counterfeits than genuine ones," Musunga told reporters.
He explained that such trade arrangements compromise conditions under which specialised drugs are meant to be transported, leading to the sale of sub-standard products.
"Exposing medicines to high temperatures or unfavourable conditions changes the composition of the drugs, rendering them ineffective," added Musunga, whose Nairobi firm serves nine African nations.
Counterfeit drugs account for 30 percent of the pharmaceutical trade in the east African nation.