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India's Strides Arcolab, Eli Lilly in generic cancer drug tie-up

MUMBAI (Reuters) - India's Strides Arcolab and Eli Lilly will jointly manufacture and distribute generic cancer drugs for developing markets, the drugmakers said on Wednesday, as the U.S. company looks to expand its presence in emerging markets.

The tie-up is the latest in a line of agreements between 'Big Pharma' companies eyeing greater access to high-growth emerging markets, and Indian companies looking for global expertise.

Under the agreement, Strides subsidiary Agila Specialties will manufacture the generic oral and injectable cancer drugs that Lilly will register and market.

The companies will begin with 10 medicines, with an option for Lilly to increase the number in the future.

Annual drug spending in emerging markets is expected to grow 12 to 15 percent from 2012 to 2016, according to healthcare information provider IMS Health, and is on track to make up 28 percent of global sales by 2015, up from 12 percent in 2005.

"Cancer medicines of the highest quality continue to be an unmet need in many markets around the world," Jacques Tapiero, Lilly, senior vice-president, said in a statement.

(Reporting by Henry Foy; Editing by Prateek Chatterjee)