Unrealistic Drug Policy leads to 20% decrease in Pakistani Drugs Export –M. Zaka


Unrealistic Drug Policy leads to 20% decrease
in Pakistani Drugs Export - M. Zaka

Out of 575 licensed drug manufacturers, except 60,
all others are now sick units and 24 are up for sale
but there is no buyer - Zahid Saeed

KARACHI: National Pharmaceutical industry of Pakistan which is producing quality drugs at economical prices has been gradually increasing its drugs export which increased from US$ Fifty Million a few years ago to US$ 200 Million in the Year 2013. However, due to unrealistic drug policy of the government, the drug exports decreased by 20% during the Year 2014. This was stated by Mr. Mohammad Zaka, Chief of Schazoo Laboratories and Chairman of the PPMA Drug Pricing Committee while talking to the media personnel during the press conference called by the PPMA on January 21st 2015.

Pharmaceuticals Mr. Zaka said was a globally comparative industry and we can increase our exports manifold provided the government listens to the industry representatives and solves some of their problems.  Pakistan, it may be mentioned here at present exports drugs to over fifty countries in Asia, Africa including Sri Lanka and Afghanistan.  People in all these countries prefer drugs produced in Pakistan over Indian drugs even if they are a bit expensive because of their high quality. Pakistan also is an important country in the Islamic World and we can increase our drugs exports substantially if we have FDA certified drug manufacturing facilities which demands major investment. This is only possible if the government allows some incentives to the Pharma industry, he stated.

Mr. Zahid Saeed Chief of Indus Pharma who was also present on this occasion said that freezing the drug prices has significantly eroded the profitability of the Pharma industry. At present out of five hundred seventy five licensed drug manufacturers, except fifty of sixty units, all others have become sick units which are struggling to survive. He also disclosed that at present over two dozen drug manufacturing plants are up for sale but there is no buyer. If the situation does not improve soon, more and more of these drug manufacturing facilities will be moving towards being labeled as sick units, he remarked.

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