Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Seek Adoption Of Expedited Medicine’s Access Programme
The National President, Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (PMG-MAN), Dr. . Okechukwu Anpa,has solicited the support of the Federal government to assist the PMG-MAN by adopting the Expedited Medicine’s Access Programme (E-MAP).
The National President who made this known in Abuja at a meeting with the Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole and executive members of the Association said there was need for government to ensure access to forex for basic raw materials required for production.
He enumerated its benefits to include: improved access to medicine and affordability; assurance of quality drugs; sustainability of essential medicine needs and supply to Nigerians; employment of innovative techniques to absorb some local content cost and employment generation, amongst others.
Dr. Anpa observed that the fiscal policy of the government was not responsible for the recent hike in cost of medicines witnessed across the country.
While responding the Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole, re-iterated the commitment of the Federal Ministry of Health to partner with local pharmaceutical manufacturing Companies to ensure access to quality medicines by the Nigerian populace at affordable cost.
Professor Adewole said that in line with the National Drug Policy which stipulates that Nigeria should aim at producing 70% of its medicines needs, the Health Ministry was ready to support willing and capable groups to expedite action towards the achievement of that goal.
Adewole stressed that import duties on imported drugs would remain while waiver on tariffs would be sought on imported drugs yet to be manufactured in Nigeria. This, he added was one of the ways to encourage competitiveness and create enabling environment for local drug manufacturers.
Professor Adewole also inaugurated a committee of experts, headed by the Director, Food and Drugs Services, Pharm. Modupe Chukuma to come up with a list of drugs that Nigeria was yet to have the capacity to produce so that waiver on tariffs on importation could be sought from the Finance Ministry.
He advised the manufacturers to strive to reduce cost of locally manufactured drugs by as much as 30% and create efficient systems to ensure that drugs get to the last person in need of them.