Pharmaceuticals have demanded government to link drug prices with inflation and allow at least 50 percent of inflation rates to be increased. They also urged Drug Regulatory Authority Pakistan (DRAP) to help domestic pharmaceutical industry to tap big international markets for exports.
This was said by former Chairman Pakistan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association (PPMA) and Chairman Korangi Association of Trade & Industry (KATI) Zahid Saeed while addressing during Inaugural Ceremony of 3-days Pak Pharma and Healthcare Expo held at Expo Centre Karachi.
Director Central Drug Laboratory Dr. Saifur Rehman Khattak and Deputy Director General DRAP Sindh Dr. Najamul Saqib represented DRAP CEO Dr. Mohammad Aslam in the event as he was chief guest but could not make it to reach Karachi due to another urgent engagement in Islamabad. Director Prime Event Management Kamran Abbasi and another former Chairman PPMA Shaikh Kaiser Waheed were also among other speakers.
Zahid Saeed further said that if drug prices are not linked with inflation, more companies will be forced for closure resulting in shortage of more drugs. “Almost 17 companies were manufacturing drugs for tuberculosis (TB) but were not allowed price raise and out of them 15 stopped manufacturing these drugs. Due to this situation we often face shortage of TB medicines. There can also be shortage of iron drugs if prices are not revised. It is better of to have one iron tablet in 60 paisa rather its stopping its production,” he explained.
“We also condemn leveling allegation against DRAP and federal ministry that they have offered bribery to allow raise in drug prices. This was already urgently needed to ensure availability of drugs in the market and sustainability of industry,” Zahid Saeed added. He said that so far Pakistani pharmaceutical companies are exporting to poorest countries of Africa continent and could not tap huge markets of the world. For this we all have to work, he stressed.
Director, Prime Event Management informed that exhibition is exclusively focused on pharmaceutical equipment manufacturers, chemicals, laboratory equipments, packaging material, analytical equipment, environmental control, pharmaceutical consultants, hospital & health equipment manufacturers, ambulance and rescue vehicles manufacturers, surgical equipment, fire alarm & equipment, hospital consumables and accessories.
At the concluding ceremony, MQM leader Farooq Sattar emphasized the importance of the pharma sector in advancement and development of Pakistan. He appreciated Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah for showing interest in provincial issues and working with enthusiasm.