A sharp rise in prices of commonly used drug raw materials from China has prompted a pharmaceutical industry lobby to seek higher retail prices of medicines that are under government price control. The group has warned that failure to do so may lead to a shortage of medicines.
With most small drug makers dependent on imports of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) from China, Federation of Pharmaceutical Entrepreneurs (FOPE) has sought a proportionate change in prices of medicines covered by the Drug Price Control Order (DPCO).
The Indian pharma industry, particularly small drug makers, has been hurt by a shutdown of API manufacturing units in China because of environmental concerns. According to B.R. Sikri, president of FOPE, “prices of most of the commonly used APIs have increased in the range of 50% to 200% in a period of 3-4 months. The pharmaceutical market is dependent on imports to the tune of almost 70% of its APIs requirements.”
Bulk drugs or APIs are the active raw materials used in a drug that give it the therapeutic effect. The Chinese government crackdown on API manufacturers has not only led to a rise in prices of raw material but has also caused supply disruptions,...