Industry fees could pay for almost half of the Food and Drug Administration’s $4.5bn budget, it has been announced.

US President Barack Obama requested on Monday a 17% rise in the FDA’s 2013 budget to support the review of generic drugs and biosimilars, but much of this funding would come from inspections and fees paid by pharmaceutical companies.

FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg told a press conference, "There is a common good here, and I think it’s not inappropriate that industry help and support these critical services that matter so much to the health of the nation and the health of the economy."

Over $364m would be spent on supporting generic drug activities and the development of biosimilar products, while $10m would go to hiring 19 inspectors to focus on China.

"Our budget increases are targeted to strategic areas that will help speed the availability of new medical products, address the challenges of increased globalisation and allow FDA to fulfil its public health duties more efficiently," Hamburg added in a statement.

The plans are yet to be approved by Congress.

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