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Sri Lanka stresses importance of strong pharmaceutical manufacturing industries

Sri Lanka stresses importance of strong pharmaceutical manufacturing industries

Daily FT: Health and Industries Minister Dr. Ramesh Pathirana has underscored the critical role of steadfast pharmaceutical manufacturing industries in ensuring economic stability and to ensure a healthy nation.
In a meeting with local pharmaceutical manufacturers held at the Health Ministry, he emphasized that historical data strongly supports this assertion.
The objective of the discussion was to strengthen the understanding between the Health Ministry and pharmaceutical manufacturers, with a shared vision of boosting domestic production to ensure the availability of critical medicines for the people.
Dr. Pathirana asserted that the production of essential medicines within the country is imperative, and assured that both the Government and the Health Ministry will extend the necessary support for this endeavor.
He also stressed the importance of transparency in this process, insisting on a methodical approach towards formalizing the initiative.
Commenting on the pharmaceutical industry in Sri Lanka, Dr. Pathirana acknowledged that there is room for improvement.
He noted that the public has a negative perception of the Health Ministry and its leadership it was everyone’s responsibility to work towards improving and clarifying this negative opinion.
The Minister also highlighted the potential for significant cost savings by boosting domestic pharmaceutical production, pointing out the substantial revenues earned by o countries like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh through their pharmaceutical sectors.
Dr. Pathirana instructed officials to ensure that payments to pharmaceutical manufacturers adhere to proper protocols. He stressed the importance of timely delivery to prevent drug shortages and advised manufacturers to promptly register new drugs with the National Drug Regulatory Authority, providing the requisite documentation.
Currently, only 15%-20% of Sri Lanka’s pharmaceutical requirements are produced domestically, with the majority imported. It incurs an annual expenditure of over $ 700 million for the Government. Sri Lanka imports 1,347 types of medicines annually, of which 862 are prioritized for patient treatment, with only 208 being locally produced.

OSL take:
The government of Sri Lanka is focused on increasing the country’s manufacturing capacity of pharmaceuticals. Local authorities have prepared incentive schemes for businesses/investors looking at entering Sri Lanka’s pharmaceutical manufacturing business. Foreign businesses that launch pharmaceutical manufacturing processes in Sri Lanka could also look at the exporting of pharmaceuticals to other countries in the region after meeting the local demand. Sri Lanka’s geographical positioning in the Indian Ocean and the many trade agreements as well as trade concessions enjoyed by the country could also help boost the country’s pharmaceutical manufacturing sector. Given the growth and business potential in Sri Lanka’s pharmaceutical manufacturing industry that has the full support of the local authorities, foreign businesses/investors could confidently explore the expanding opportunities in the industry. Foreign businesses could also look at forming partnerships or joint ventures with local businesses engaged in the pharmaceutical manufacturing industry with the aim of further expansion.

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Article Code : VBS/AT/20231116/Z_6

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