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Govt mulls ways to boost domestic API production

Amid the plausible scenario of dearth of APIs due to the supply disruption caused by Coronavirus infected China, the government is envisaging ways to encourage domestic manufacturing. To foster the manufacture of active pharmaceutical ingredients, a suitable ecosystem with focus on fiscal and procedural support to pharma companies is being considered. In a meeting chaired by Niti Aayog chief executive Amitabh Kant on Wednesday, key industry players like ike Dr. Reddy’s, Lupin, Glenmark, Mylan, Zydus, Pfizer and Biocon, brought forth issues like ways to reduce import dependence on China for bulk drugs or intermediates.

The Drug Regulatory Authority is preparing a list of APIs for which India is very dependent on Chinese imports. These include antibiotics like azithromycin, amoxicillin, ofloxacin, metronidazole, vitamins such as B12, B1, B6 and E, female hormone progesterone and anticardiac arrest drug atorvastatin, among others. “It is a good development. The government is willing to support the API industry. In the process, the industry will bounce back (and regain its) glory,” opined Pankaj Patel, group chairman, Zydus.