Companies & Sectors
Indian vaccine market to climb to $871 million by 2016

The second most populous country in the world has emerged as a major vaccine producer in recent years, focusing efforts on geographical regions where vaccines are not funded by the UN or charitable organisations

Washington: India’s vaccine production sector is likely to expand dramatically to an estimated size of $871 million by 2016 from $350 million in 2011, reports PTI quoting a report.

 

The report said it anticipates a sizeable shift in the industry landscape, as the most promising future growth opportunities for the production and sale of vaccines come from emerging economies such as India and China.

 

Concerns regarding the emergence of bio-terrorism and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), in addition to the search for cancer vaccines, are the drivers for the fast expansion of the India's vaccine production sector, said the new report from pharmaceutical industry experts GBI Research.

 

The second most populous country in the world has emerged as a major vaccine producer in recent years, focusing efforts on geographical regions where vaccines are not funded by the UN or charitable organisations, it said.

 

As a result, exports constituted 65% of the Indian vaccines market last year, GBI Research said.

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Sharad Pawar to decide on nephew Ajit’s resignation today

The NCP legislature party has already appealed to Ajit Pawar to withdraw his resignation, sent to the state chief minister on Tuesday, after an expose in a section of the media on alleged irregularities in the irrigation department

Mumbai: The crisis in Maharashtra government after deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar’s resignation is expected to draw to a close with the intervention of Union agriculture minister and NCP (Nationalist Congress Party) president Sharad Pawar today, reports PTI.

 

Mr Pawar will participate in the NCP legislature party meeting which be held at Vidhan Bhavan here at 4.00pm.

 

The NCP legislature party has already appealed to Ajit Pawar to withdraw his resignation, sent to chief minister Prithviraj Chavan on Tuesday, after an expose in a section of the media on alleged irregularities in the irrigation department during his tenure as minister.

 

The party has authorised Mr Pawar to take a final call on the matter.

 

After Ajit resigned, all the other 19 NCP ministers in the government had also handed over their resignation letters to state unit president Madhukar Pichad.

 

The resignation of MLAs was being seen as a show of strength by Ajit that he had the backing of the entire legislature party.

 

However, Ajit Pawar refuted speculation of a rift with his uncle (Sharad Pawar).

 

NCP suspects that the chief minister was ‘leaking’ information related to the irrigation department, a charge that has been denied by the Congress.

 

“In the age of RTI Act, nothing can remain under wraps,” Congress sources said.

 

There were reports of NCP activists burning Mr Chavan’s effigies and taking out demonstrations in some parts of the state. Congress took strong objection to this, following which Mr Pichad issued a statement asking his party activists to stop the protests.

 

“Ajit Pawar’s resignation is an internal matter of our party,” he said in the statement.

 

Meanwhile, Congress is standing firmly behind Mr Chavan. The party said decision on Ajit Pawar’s resignation will be taken after consultation with Sharad Pawar and Congress central leadership.

 

In the last four days, Mr Chavan has been meeting legislators and party leaders and is in touch with Sharad Pawar and the Congress leaders in Delhi.

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Price control for essential medicines: A welcome step in the right direction

This major step will have adverse effect on manufacturers of branded drugs who expect a revenue loss of about Rs1,500 crore but will be beneficial to the aam aadmi in reducing his cost of medications

The recommendation by the Group of Ministers to bring 348 essential medicines under MRP (maximum retail price), on Thursday, is a major step taken to alleviate the suffering of the “aam aadmi” in reducing his costs on medications.

 

This fixing of MRP for 348 essential drugs “at an average price of all brands in a segment that has more than 1% market share” will bring much-needed relief to the public.

 

What is even more gratifying to note is that it will be statutory for doctors to recommend generic medicines, along with branded ones, as this will enable the consumer, the patient, to obtain medicines at the most competitive prices.

 

Such a move, when it is finally approved by the Cabinet, to which the recommendations of the Group of Ministers will be submitted by next week, should be given widest publicity through the media. In fact, it may be even more worthwhile for all drug stores to put up proper notice, in all regional languages, so that public is aware.

 

These notice or display boards must be made uniform, except for the language part, as it may change from state to another, so that the buyers are aware that they can now have access to generic medicines from these shops.

 

While prices may come down as a result of this move and more generic shops will be opened, there is the hidden danger that some manufacturers may indulge in higher trade and other forms of discount so that the store keeper is tempted to push up sales of their products.  We must guard against such a possibility. Another much-needed step is to ensure that all drug stores, which prepare and supply prescription drugs, must have qualified pharmacists on duty and must be identifiable.

 

This major step will have adverse effect on the manufacturers of branded drugs according to the industry sources, who expect a revenue loss of about Rs1,500 crore.  Years ago, it was reported in the US media that for a new drug to be marketed, the overall cost of research, trials and all related work cost the manufacturer something like $800 million, which is why medications are expensive, resulting in high pricing spread over several years of selling!

 

You may also want to read: Medical prescriptions: Money spinners or drainers? , Get your medicines at 60% discount! , Proposed changes to expand drug price control .

 

(AK Ramdas has worked with the Engineering Export Promotion Council of the ministry of commerce and was associated with various committees of the Council. His international career took him to places like Beirut, Kuwait and Dubai at a time when these were small trading outposts; and later to the US. He can be contacted at [email protected].)

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COMMENTS

Bakul Gandhi

4 years ago

While it is a welcome step, lot more is required to be done. Hospitals, even charitable, have become more than commercials and loot all around. The charges are very high. One has to go through lot of tests regularly. It is to be done in hospital only. Same is the case for prescribed medicines. You have to get only from the hospital's medical store. Here medicine is very costly. Again, there is no way to check misuse.If it is like diapers, wardboy will show more use. Same diaper is rerouted. If it is medicine,RMO/Nurse may do it.

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