Further tasks for pharmaceutical industry development identified
On November 15, President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev held a meeting on the analysis of ongoing work to develop the pharmaceutical industry and provide the population with medicines, as well as discuss priority tasks for the future.
Pharmaceutical Industry Development Agency at the Ministry of Health was established by Decree of the President “On measures to radically improve the pharmaceutical industry management system” of November 7, 2017. The terms for registration of medicines and medical devices have been reduced to support entrepreneurs. Domestic manufacturers are exempted from customs duties when importing raw materials and technological equipment.
As a result, 41 new pharmaceutical enterprises have been created over the past two years, their total number has reached 191. This year, the volume of production in the industry has increased by 1.5 times compared to last year.
18 new capacities with a total value of 84 million dollars were commissioned on the territory of 8 free pharmaceutical economic zones, they launched the production of medicines of 600 items and more than 50 types of medical devices.
However, these capacities are not enough, as is the wide range of domestic pharmaceutical products. In this regard, domestic demand is not fully provided, the shortage has to be ensured through imports.
The volume of the pharmaceutical market in the country is estimated at 1 billion USD, the share of local manufacturers is small. Control over the quality and pricing of medicines due to the lack of a labeling system and the inability to fully trace the movement of goods is complicated. So, over the past two years, cases of importing drugs into Uzbekistan that do not meet quality standards in the amount of 123 billion soums have been identified.
Taking this into account, a reliable and effective way to improve public health is to expand the production of high-quality pharmaceutical products based on environmentally friendly medicinal plants growing in the country.
At the meeting, President Shavkat Mirziyoyev paid particular attention to these aspects and identified priority tasks for providing the population and healthcare institutions with affordable and high-quality drugs, medical devices and equipment.
It was noted that there are sufficient opportunities to localize by 2025 at least 50 percent of domestic consumption, to bring the range of domestic products from the current 2.5 thousand to 4 thousand items.
The Pharmaceutical Industry Development Agency, the Ministry of Investments and Foreign Trade has been tasked with compiling a list of new products being developed, developing promising projects together with large pharmaceutical enterprises of India, Russia, Ukraine, China, Hungary, Bulgaria and Slovakia.
Responsible persons were indicated on the need to expand the range of original domestic medicines to at least 100 in the next five years, to organize for this purpose a modern technology park in Kibray district together with enterprises and research institutes, as well as a branch of a prestigious British university. Special attention was paid to training modern personnel, advanced training of specialists in the field abroad.
The Ministry of Finance and the Pharmaceutical Industry Development Agency have been tasked with developing software for labeling and controlling the movement of drugs, and introducing it before the end of 2020. This will prevent the circulation of counterfeit products and track the demand for medicines in real time.
GMP quality standard recommended by the World Health Organization is being introduced at the enterprises of the industry. In this regard, in order to provide the population with qualitative products, it was indicated that it is advisable to introduce a procedure for mandatory verification of compliance with this standard when registering imported medicines.
The state of completeness of the supply of health facilities with affordable and qualitative drugs was also considered at the meeting. It was determined that in order to ensure the transparency of this process, the procurement of drugs for state medical institutions, their storage and delivery will be carried out in a new order.
Thus, a transparent procurement procedure will be ensured through tenders for centralized procurement by the Ministry of Health.
Winners of tenders will provide services for centralized procurement, storage and delivery of medicines to state medical institutions.
Instructions were given on eradication of corruption in the pharmaceutical market, development of healthy competition in the field, and uninterrupted supply of qualitative and affordable medicines to social pharmacies.
The importance of explaining to the public the reforms implemented through the media was emphasized.
President Shavkat Mirziyoyev gave instructions to work out a five-year concept for development of the pharmaceutical industry.
Information of responsible persons was heard, necessary measures were identified on the issues discussed at the meeting.