Davos WEF
Davos WEF

Trump could boost economy but Obamacare needs to be replaced if repealed, CEO of drug giant says

Pharmaceuticals only a small fraction of healthcare costs: Novartis CEO

Donald Trump's policies could be good for the economy but Obamacare should be replaced if it's repealed, the CEO of drug giant Novartis told CNBC on Tuesday.

Joseph Jimenez played down some of the negative comments that President-elect has made towards large pharma firms. Trump accused the drug industry earlier this month of "getting away with murder".

But Jimenez said that some of Trump's policies could benefit industry.

We will continue to invest: Novartis CEO

"When you think about the healthcare sector and specifically pharma, we spend $70 billion in research and development in the U.S., and we account for about 4.5 million jobs as an industry. So this President-elect is all about creating jobs in the U.S. and I think this is a place where we can build and grow," Jimenez told CNBC in a TV interview at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

"Some of the policies that could reignite the economy in the U.S. would be good for this industry and it would be good for jobs."

Donald Trump has pledged to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare. But repealing the law would leave 18 million Americans without insurance if no replacement is in place, the Congressional Budget Office warned on Tuesday. Jimenez urged the Trump administration to consider a replacement for Obamacare.

"What's important to us is that all Americans get access to important medicines. The discoveries that are happening right now are amazing. We want to make sure that if the ACA is repealed that it is replaced with something that will ensure that these Americans still have access to the innovative medicines that we are able to launch," Jimenez said.

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