Report finds many Western companies are profiting from China’s forced organ harvesting practices

A new report published by the Institute to Research the Crimes of Communism (IRCC) has revealed that up to 28 companies headquartered in Western nations have been providing materials, drugs and devices that have supported the development of China’s transplantation infrastructure.

The Economics of Organ Harvesting in China: The Part of the Companies and Doctors in Democratic Countries in the Illegal Organ Harvesting in China, authored by Pavel Porubiak and Lukas Kudlacek and published in November of 2019, states that many of these companies who are supplying a wide range of knowledge and materials for transplantation procedures, including organ preservation, immunosuppressive drugs, transplant diagnostic, medical robotics, transplant diagnostics and other services and products, have been doing this for the last 20 years. Furthermore, the authors note, most, if not all, are likely aware of the facts and evidence related to illegal organ harvesting by the Chinese government.

The revenue generated from supporting China’s transplantation infrastructure for these Western companies, Porubiak and Kudlacek assessed, has reached into billions of USD each year over the last decade.

The IRCC report references a study by the Sweden Council for Business and Investments which revealed that China is heavily dependent on imported Western medical equipment, particularly with respect to organ perfusion products. In 2019, 92% of the medical equipment in China came from overseas. In addition, the companies which supply China with transplantation materials are supporting not only transplantation procedures for Chinese citizens but also for patients from at least 20 countries and regions in the world who travel to China in hopes for a quick transplant with a healthy organ.

Porubiak and Kudlacek used a scoping study methodology, drawn from the research of Davis, Drey and Gould to reach their conclusions, using a number of different internet keyword searches to locate and identify corporations that could be operating in the field of organ transplant or could be directly profiting from it. They then researched companies’ respective product offerings to determine whether or not they would be useful for transplantation and whether their products were being sold to China, while calculating what revenues were generated from the sales of these products. The authors found that many companies were headquartered in the U.S. and several in Europe.

According to an article on the IRCC report in the Byline Times, Porubiak and Kudlacek contacted every company listed to request comments on the allegations, but only one had yet replied.

Byline referenced a 2013 University of Richmond’s Robins School of Business paper which questioned the ethical actions of Swiss multinational pharmaceutical company Roche Holding AG, which is included on the IRCC list. The paper, entitled Roche’s Clinical Trials with Organs from Prisoners: Does Profit Trump Morality, examines how the company conducted clinical trials with organs taken from executed prisoners. CEO Franz Humer is noted in the paper as praising China for its “openness” towards organ transplantation, unlike other countries which employ greater scrutiny or scorn when assessing ethical standards in transplantation.

In 2010, Byline states, “Roche was given two ’Shame Awards‘ from the Swiss-based corporate responsibility watchdog Berne Declaration and Greenpeace. In 2018, it derived 7.9% of its total revenue from China, equating to more than $5 billion. Byline Times has approached Roche for comment.”