India, Egypt to partner for pharma trade, research, regulatory cooperation

Senior Indian and Egyptian officials have held a round of talks and will meet again at a conference later this month as India sees Egypt as a gateway to North Africa for its pharmaceutical exports , and the African country seeks to promote Indian businesses to strengthen the API industry and manufacture drugs in the country.

However, they must overcome a challenge: India is not among the countries currently approved by the Egyptian authorities for good manufacturing practices.

Recently, officials from the two countries met to discuss pharmaceutical trade partnership, regulatory cooperation, AYUSH, education and pharmaceutical research. India’s pharmaceutical ministry has consulted with the Central Drug Standards Control Organization (CDSCO), the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPER) and the Ministry of AYUSH to proceed with this.

“India is South Africa’s top import partner for formulations. Egypt is looking to become a hub for the supply of vaccines, pharmaceuticals and medical equipment to the domestic market as well as other African countries. They are eager to attract Indian pharmaceutical companies to see Egypt as a manufacturing base serving the drug, serum and vaccine markets in Africa and the region. Egypt follows a Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) registration model and India is not among the 22 reference countries accepted by the Egyptian authorities,” said a person familiar with the matter.

At the first meeting of the India-Egypt Joint Working Group held in March, India decided to share its best practices on pharmaceutical trade, AYUSH, pharmaceutical research, partnerships regulation, education and investment. “This whole partnership is beneficial for India in terms of building re-licensing and diversifying its global supply chain,” the official said.

Dr. Sondos Mohamed Moshtohry, International Cooperation Officer – Chairman of the Egyptian Drugs Administration (EDA), led the Egyptian delegation while the Indian delegation was led by senior officials of the Drug Administration and partners. leading role.

“The respective agenda points were taken by each individual. We have sought comments from our various stakeholders such as CDSCO, NIPERS and AYUSH Department,” the official said, adding that the upcoming “Africa Health ExCon” meeting on 5-7 June will play an important role in building strong bilateral relations. .

During April-September 2021, India was Egypt’s fifth largest trading partner. It was Egypt’s largest importer of goods and the seventh largest exporter to Egypt during the same period.

“Because we follow the Atmanirbhar strategy in India, everyone wants reliable and diverse sources. Therefore, Egypt is looking to India as an important partner to boost its pharmaceutical industry,” the official said.

Inquiries emailed to a spokesperson for the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers and the Egyptian embassy remained unanswered as of press time.

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