Pharma Sector Growth Opportunities

Nigeria, Algeria offer excellent export opportunities for Indian pharma cos: Appaji

Nigeria and Algeria are on the radar of Indian pharma cos, as they offer excellent export opportunities for the Indian firms. After South Africa, Nigeria and Algeria have emerged as leading importers of pharmaceutical products from India and to further consolidate India’s hold in the African markets, regular buyer seller meets and exhibitions are being held to showcase India’s pharmaceutical capabilities, says Dr P V Appaji, director general, Pharmexcil.

India’s exports to African countries especially Nigeria and Algeria have been on the rise during the past the one decade. At present Algeria is emerging as the second biggest pharma market in Africa with about $3 billion worth of imports and there is lot of potential for Indian pharma industry to explore and grab the opportunities in this market.

Keeping this in view, the Pharmaceuticals Export Promotion Council of India (Pharmexcil) is pushing further and planning to organise Buyer Seller Meet (BSM) for the first time in Algeria along with the second edition of Expo-cum-BSM in Nigeria. Taking this as an opportunity, particularly exporters of APIs, semi formulations (pellets), speciality formulations like oncology, anti-retrievals, herbals, nutraceuticals, medical devices etc., can make maximum out of it by way of developing new business relations with suppliers, manufacturers, pharma associations and regulators for a sustainable future growth.

“With the kind of success we have achieved in our first edition in Nigeria last year, this year we are moving forward a step further and planning to organise an exclusive BSM (Buyer seller meet) meet in Algeria. Apart from this, as a part of our second edition in Nigeria we have planned an Expo-cum-BSM and expecting a very good response from the Nigerian manufacturers and suppliers. With the active support of Indian embassy and unrelenting efforts by Pharmexcil we are determined to further boost Indian pharmaceutical exports to the African nations,” said Dr. Appaji.

When asked about the various hurdles faced by the Indian pharma exporters to the African countries, Dr Appaji felt that understanding the drug regulations of each country is important. Though the African countries have acknowledged the quality generics from India, countries like Nigeria are restricting the formulation exports from India.

Another important issue hindering Indian exports to African countries is the issue of counterfeit drugs. Some self interested groups are supplying fake drugs in the name of Indian exporters. This is a big concern for the country’s pharma industry. Moreover, defining and understanding counterfeit drugs is important, because legitimate generics are being propagated as counterfeit.

To overcome these issues Indian embassy is closely associating with National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and in regular touch with various pharma and manufacturing associations in African countries to improve understanding and transparency.