Sat. Apr 17th, 2021

Innovation and collaboration will help Indian pharma leapfrog in the global value chain: ExpertsIndia is starting to go up the ladder, be it in response to the pandemic, treatment options, clinical management of patients or vaccines, so it no longer needs to be just proud of being pharmacy of the world said, Bharat Serums and Vaccines MD & CEO Sanjiv Navangul speaking at the India Pharmaworld Summit.

During the panel discussion on the theme “Strengthening Trust in Make in India” he and other panellists, including Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance Secretary General, Sudarshan Jain, AIIMS Bhopal President, Dr. (Prof) Y. K. Gupta and Invest India, Vice President Varun Sood agreed on collaboration and innovation being the major drivers of growth for the Indian pharmaceutical industry.

“We have no choice, if we have to be world champions in this area, we need to necessarily understand that we have to go up the value chain, and going up the value chain means innovation,” Navangul said.

While sharing how he sees the development within the industry, he added, “We’re making great strides in trying to go beyond the normal chemistry generics. Complex molecules are being redone here. We are going up the chain in biosimilars, but understand that as it happened in chemistry, with biosimilar development that is happening today, in 5 to 10 years time, we can create our own biologics, which can meet the global standards. We can see the road ahead is coming better.”

Dr. (Prof) Y. K. Gupta highlighted the limited collaboration between the industry and academia as a bottleneck, he said “Industry must collaborate with the academic institution, it should not work in isolation. Both should be supported by the regulations, which are congenial, fast, accurate and should be a facilitator.

Sudarshan Jain listed out some of the critical drivers which are important for Indian pharmaceutical industry to thrive, he said: “First is the regulatory environment, can we make the regulatory environment simpler, can we remove obstacles and make faster approval of drugs, we have demonstrated it in vaccine approvals. Second is self-reliance in the production of API’s, the government has announced production linked incentive (PLI) schemes for making India self-reliant in API and that is a very positive step going forward. Third, is the policy of pricing, because there is too much emphasis on cost in India….there should be liberalization in pricing policy so that we can invest in research and quality.”

Adding on how the pharma industry will benefit from the PLI scheme, Invest India’s, Varun said, “We are the third-largest API market globally, but right now, we are heavily importing most of our API from other countries. The whole idea of this PLI scheme across API’s, pharmaceuticals and medical devices is to make India self-reliant.. Moving from pharmacy of the world to laboratory of the world that’s where the R&D and innovation come into play. The Department of Pharmaceutical is working on exclusive research and development policy related to the pharmaceutical sector that is in the play.”

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