Pharma producers hail ban on import of 37 medicinesThe Association of Pharmaceutical Producers of Nepal (Appon) has welcomed the government’s move of imposing restriction on 37 medicinal products that are largely produced by domestic drugs manufacturers.
The Association of Pharmaceutical Producers of Nepal (Appon) has welcomed the government’s move of imposing restriction on 37 medicinal products that are largely produced by domestic drugs manufacturers.
The government is likely to come up with a policy to encourage domestic pharmaceutical companies in the segment by reducing the import of these products.
Of the 49 drug manufacturers operating in the country, almost all have been manufacturing general medicines. However, these pharmaceuticals have long been complaining of the problems they have been facing in the wake of growing imports of these medicines.
“The import of medicines that are being produced by a number of domestic companies has been affecting local manufacturers’ business,” said Appon President Shankar Ghimire at a programme on Monday. According to him, the government move will help local companies to expand their functioning to their full capacity.
Currently, these companies have been utilising just 35-40 percent of their total production capacity. The country has a Rs 30-billion worth drugs market. At present, the domestic products account for 45 percent market shares. Indian products fill up 52 percent market shares while the rest of three percent is for the medicinal products imported from the third countries.
Appon has come up with its view at a time when drug importers have been protesting against the government’s move to ban the import of selected products.
Appon Senior Vice-president Deepak Prasad Dahal said Nepali products have been unable to compete with cheaper Indian products. “As the Indian government has been providing large amount of subsidies in the segment, Nepali products are unable to compete with them,” said Dahal, adding that the government imposing restriction on the imported products could help the country to become self-reliant in general medicines.
Appon Past President Umesh Lal Shrestha sought government’s support to the pharmaceutical companies. “As almost all these companies have adopted the Good Manufacturing Practice recommended by the World Health Organisation, they are capable to manufacture quality medicines at home,” Shrestha said.