Last updated at 3:49 PM on 25th February 2012
The head of Britain's biggest drugs company has accused the Government of systematically delaying the introduction of new cancer drugs in order to save money.
GlaxoSmithKline chief executive Sir Andrew Witty warned that ministers were making false economies as they tried to grapple with the deficit in the public finances.
In an interview with the BBC, he said that governments across Europe had already cut drug prices by 5 per cent a year - costing GSK around £300 million per annum.
However, he said governments were now seeking to go further in an effort to achieve even bigger savings - and he highlighted Britain's decision to delay new cancer treatments.
'The bit I'm much more frightened about is that what's now beginning to become clear is that, in addition to price reductions, governments are delaying the approval of innovative new drugs,' he said