Pharmaceutical Industry seeks government support to enhance exports up to $10 billion

Islamabad, November 16, 2015 (PPI-OT):Prevailing drug laws and regulations are not favouring the local pharmaceutical industry due to which this important industry could not realize its full growth potential as yet. However, if government formulate favourable policies and rules and provide needed support, pharmaceutical industry has the potential to change the destiny of the nation and take its annual exports up to US$ 10 billion by 2020, observed Hamid Raza, Chairman, Pakistan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association during his visit to Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry along with a delegation.

He said over 700 pharmaceutical companies are working in Pakistan meeting 95% domestic needs of medicines and providing jobs to thousands of people, but the government was treating it as a charity industry. He said government has not revised medicines prices since 2002 while overregulation and bureaucracy’s rigid approach towards this industry was quite discouraging due to which pharma industry was facing myriad problems.

He said Pakistani pharmaceutical companies were on top in Philippines and Philippines parliament recognized it, but our own government was neglecting it despite the fact that this industry has huge potential to grow. He said India developed free zones, provided soft loans and other facilities to its pharma industry due to which their exports have gone up to US$ 22 billion, but due to lack of attention of government, our exports have come down to US$140 million from US$200 million in 2013. He stressed that government should listen to our woes and address all issues of pharma industry on priority so that it could play more effective role in the economic development of the country. At this occasion, PPMA members announced full support for Abdul Rauf, former President ICCI and Presidential candidate for FPCCI.

Addressing the delegation, Atif Ikram Sheikh, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that only 25 countries are independent in medicines and Pakistan is one of them. He said local pharmaceutical companies are producing cost effective medicines and exporting to 50 countries including UK, Germany, Ireland, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan. He said Pakistani pharma industry is dominating in Afghanistan meeting its 80% needs of medicines and is giving a tough time to Indian competitors which showed good quality of our medicines. He emphasized that government should give priority attention to this important industry and take policy measures for its better growth so that it could contribute more effectively in improving our economy.

Abdul Rauf, Presidential candidate for FPCCI thanked PPMA members for announcing their support for him and assured that if elected, he would take up their issues with government for urgent redress.

For more information, contact:
Khalid Chaudhry
Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI)
Chamber House, Aiwan-e-Sanat-o-Tijarat Road,
Mauve Area, G-8/1,
Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: +9251 225 0526, 2253145, 8432676
Fax: +9251 225 2950