China will offer preferential value-added tax (VAT) policies for 21 drugs for treatment of rare diseases and four crude drugs starting March 1.
Medical workers raise public awareness of rare diseases in Beijing, on Feb. 28, 2018. (Photo: VCG)
The VAT for the import of the 21 drugs and the four crude drugs will be levied at 3 percent. The VAT rate for the production and sale, wholesale and retail of rare disease drugs will also be reduced to 3 percent.
China will ensure the use of drugs for over 20 million rare disease patients, a State Council executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang decided on February 11.
The 12th International Rare Disease Day falls on February 28, 2019, with the theme of "Bridging health and social care." About 6,000 to 8,000 rare diseases are recognized internationally, and the average life expectancy for 30 percent of rare disease patients is no longer than five years.