With a view to fetch larger fortunes for small and medium scale pharma enterprises, including bulk drug manufacturing units, through exports, the Indian Drug Manufacturers Association (IDMA) will present new proposals in the Pharma Vision-2014 to be submitted to the government next month. Plans to avail technology upgradation fund scheme for SMEs are the most significant suggestions, according to S V Veeramani, president, IDMA.
While delivering a lecture on “Current Trends in Indian Pharmaceutical Industry”, organised by TN IPA, Veeramani pointed out that the ongoing technology upgradation scheme was not adequate and it has to be increased and updated in all the areas. If updated technology and skilled workers are employed, these units can enter into contract manufacturing business with big players and thereby to increase exports.
He said drugs worth US$ 40 billion in USA and US$ 25 billion in Europe will be going out of patent shortly. Out of this, India is likely to take up 30 per cent of the market valuing around US$ 19. 5 billion. Further, chances are there in US market as Obama Care in the USA is going to increase the demand for generics shortly. So, the chances of SME sector are tremendous to earn more through exports provided complying with market regulations.
“We have more than 7000 SME units which are all engaged in contract manufacturing business. The process of technology upgradation is going on, but more of it is required. For obtaining contract manufacturing from national and multi-national companies, these units have to intensify the GMP training. IDMA has requested the government for financial support to help these units,” he said.
Although India manufactures around 500 APIs, it depends on China for around 50 per cent of its requirements for bulk drugs. India’s bulk industry is growing at a rate of 17 per cent and it is hoped that India would replace Italy as second largest producer in the world. Government has also plans to push up the API industry. Now, IDMA is asking for capital subsidy, power subsidy, fund for cluster development and common effluent treatment plant (ETP) for the development of SME sector in order to compete with China.
“Compared to world pharma companies, India is spending very low on R&D because of lack of resources and margins. Recently big Indian companies have started spending more than 10 per cent of their sales on R&D, mainly on new drug delivery systems. More spending on research and development, increased GMP training and upgradation of technology are required for the survival of small scale pharma units in our country. For this, the IDMA will seek the support of the government,” he added.
IPA Tamil Nadu unit president, MM Yusuf presided over the meeting, secretary J Jayaseelan presented the report and welcomed the audience.