Guy Hatchard has been a vocal critic of the Natural Health & Supplementary Products Bill. He has recently released the following information and attachment, which gives an intriguing glimpse into where NZ is headed with the bill currently under threat of passing.
The attached newsletter from South Africa gives some clues as to where we are heading with the NHPB and why. Medsafe has become a founding member of a new international coalition of pharmaceutical regulators whose keys aims include the international harmonisation of regulations governing biological medicines. The most restrictive regulator of Natural Health Products—Health Canada chairs this group and Australian TGA is a major player.
The International Coalition of Medicines Regulatory Authorities (ICMRA) has been newly formed without any governmental authority and Medsafe has joined on its own volition. The key criteria of ICMRA membership is a commitment to harmonise regulations internationally. Initiatives devised overseas will be able to be implemented here without approval from Parliament because the NHPB is a regulatory Bill which allows the NZ NHP Authority to implement regulations of its own choosing for its own reasons. The fact that Medsafe has signed up to this indicates that they do not support the unique character of the proposed legislation they were instructed to implement in 2009, choosing instead to comply with the aims of ICMRA. It also shows why a clause has been added to the Bill to prevent a court of law upholding the core principles of the NHP Bill. It also explains why the March 16 revised SOP specifically mandates that the Medicines Schedule trumps the NHP Bill and why the July meeting to reconsider the Medicines classification has been cancelled. ICMRA aims include the harmonisation of medical classification.
It is also noteworthy that ICMRA includes a commitment to share information internationally underscoring the fact that proprietary formulas required to be submitted to Medsafe by the NHP BIll could be shared inappropriately overseas. I believe that Medsafe's membership of ICMRA indicates that it has entered into overseas commitments whose effect will be to subvert the rule of NZ law.
It is in my opinion very probable that the ICMRA scenario has been shared with NPNZ.
The attached is a longish document some of which pertains to South African NHP Industry, but the greater part of it deals with ICMRA influence on NHP regulations. SA officials have been quite open that ICMRA agendas are driving NHP regulatory decisions. Your can find out general facts about ICMRA at the TGA website.