Turkey’s investigation into drugmaker Novartis ‘ongoing’

 18 Aug 2016 - 0:00

Turkey’s investigation into drugmaker Novartis ‘ongoing’
A Novartis logo is pictured on its headquarters building in Mumbai, April 1, 2013. REUTERS / Vivek Prakash

 

Turkish health ministry official says case goes on

Novartis says still sees matter as closed, making checks

 

ISTANBUL/ZURICH: Turkey’s investigation into Novartis is “ongoing”, a Turkish health ministry official told Reuters on Thursday, after the Swiss drugmaker said last week it was not under investigation over bribery allegations in Turkey.

The Ankara chief prosecutor’s office had said in April it was investigating the Turkish unit of Novartis after allegations were made that the company benefited from bribery.

Novartis said last week that it had determined the allegations were unsubstantiated and was not aware of any government authority investigating it. It said it considered the matter “closed”.

However, an official at Turkey’s health ministry in Ankara told Reuters that an investigation into Novartis was still “ongoing”. The official declined to give further details.

In Switzerland, a Novartis spokesman said it considered the matter closed and is no longer seeking information from Turkish authorities.

It maintains the allegations were “unfounded” and based on a past complaint.

Reuters reported in March that an anonymous whistleblower accused the company of paying bribes in Turkey through a consulting firm to secure business advantages worth an estimated $85 million.

(Reporting by Can Sezer in Istanbul and Michael Shields in Zurich; Additional reporting by John Miller in Zurich; Writing by David Dolan; Editing by Patrick Markey and Toby Chopra)

Reuters