Wall Street Journal Letter to the Editor

The Economy and Long-Term Common Weal

It’s true that pollution taxes would be set at arbitrary, politically-driven levels rather than being market driven. But so are our current income-tax rates and energy policies.

Mr. Henderson notes Paul M. Romer’s ideas relating the structure of incentives to innovation using the profoundly crucial role patent policy has played in pharmaceutical innovation. But in the 21st century governments have countered the otherwise positive impact of patents with all manner of pharmaceutical price controls. This is no more dramatic than in Japan, which has solid patent policy but counters the effects by controlling prices that would otherwise allow market returns to be put back into innovation.

With its super-aging society—80-plus is its fastest-growing demographic—one might expect Japan to employ Mr. Romer’s calculations for the right incentive structure regarding both patent and pricing policy for the pharmaceutical innovation it needs. If healthier aging through innovation is a solution for Japan’s demographic age challenges, Mr. Romer’s insights would teach that public-policy controls on funding of that innovation is detrimental to its long-term economic needs.

Michael W. Hodin
CEO, Global Coalition on Aging
New York

Source: Wall Street Journal

Latest Developments

We keep our members and partners in touch with the most recent updates and opinions in the worldwide dialogue on population longevity and related issues.

Women, Work, Wellness, and That Aging Thing…

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Headlines of the Future Podcast: Decoding Healthy Aging

How can advancements in science and medicine make it possible for individuals to enjoy greater health and activity in their later years? For health leaders and organizations such as the Global Coalition on Aging, ensuring individuals can truly shine in their "Golden Years" is a matter of revisiting education and communication strategies, advancing digital health technologies and expanding access to healthcare innovation.

Longer Lifespans Require Secure Financial Futures

As many as half of 5-year-olds in the United States can now expect to live to 100, a population that is projected to swell in the decades ahead. Longer lifespans don’t guarantee a financially secure later life, however. If anything, in the absence of significant planning, extreme longevity may make financial security harder to attain.

Financial Times Letter to the Editor

The call by Messrs Mario Draghi and Emmanuel Macron for a new growth strategy under France’s EU presidency should be guided by three principles aligned with their point about “demographic evolutions changing the structure of our societies” (Opinion, December 24).

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