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Pharma cos want permission to airlift Chinese APIs

The pharma companies such as CA Labs, Zydus Takeda, Mangalam Drugs & Organics and Wallace Pharma in India have urged the government to airlift  key active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) required to make hydroxychloroquine from China. Hydroxychloroquine is one of the drugs recommended to treat severe Covid-19 patients and frontline healthcare workers.

Hydroxychloroquine manufacturers in the country are already staring at fluctuating freight rates, almost three-fold jump in prices of bulk drugs from Chinese suppliers and an erratic supply chain with cancelled or reduced frequency of cargo flights. Freight prices have jumped almost four-fold and there is no guarantee that consignments will land as scheduled.

“We have already requested senior government officials to help us secure the raw material hydroxychloroquine sulphate locally or negotiate a reasonable price on a government-to-government basis for Indian companies. We have already readied two of our plants to produce this much-needed product,” Vinay Pinto, MD of Wallace Pharma, told ET.

The government has warned pharma companies that it would take over their manufacturing plants if they stop producing these drugs at this crucial time.