asked the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) if, further to his written reply to the hon. Member for Eccles on 12 February 1980, he will list what are the commercial reasons for the confidentiality in drug licensing;(2) if the criteria upon which he applies confidentiality in respect of the application for the use, or relating to an extension of the current use of a drug by a drug company, includes such factors as (
a) the properties of the drug ( b) research findings ( c) independent evidence on the drug concerned, ( d) the final decision of the licensing authority and ( e) the application itself; what other criteria he applies; and what criteria were applied in the case of Depo-Provera.
[pursuant to his reply, 19 February 1980]: It is the policy of the Department that until a decision is reached on an application for a product licence, all details relevant to it and indeed the fact that the application has been made, should be treated as confidential so as not to prejudice the commercial interests of the company. All information relating to unsuccessful applications similarly remains confidential.