Malawi to save $36m on drug imports with Crown Pharmaceuticals establishment

Malawi is poised to save $36 million annually from drug imports after the establishment of Crown Pharmaceuticals and Research Laboratories Limited, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has said.

Principal Secretary for Ministry of Trade and Industry Nebert Nyirenda said the factory is also expected to generate $10 million in export annually.

“We are proud to say we facilitated the establishment of a $21 million Crown Pharmaceuticals company. This project would save $36 million that is used for drug importation annually and generate $10 million annually.  This project has enormously increased the availability of locally produced pharmaceutical products,” said Nyirenda.

Crown Pharmaceuticals chief executive officer Balakrishna Shibu said according to economic theory, the investment refers to the creation of capital goods in the process of production; in this case- making drugs available for distribution at affordable prices.

Local drug firm
Local drug firm to produce lifesaving essential medicines

“Having seen the difficulties in making life saving drugs available at affordable prices, by import, to especially the poorest of the society in Malawi, we set up a pharmaceutical manufacturing facility to produce lifesaving essential drugs and to market these products at affordable prices to Government of Malawi and to the population of Malawi,” Shibu said.

He said Crown Pharmaceuticals and Research Laboratories  exists to deliver high quality and safe pharmaceutical products to the healthcare sector of Malawi and to export pharmaceutical products to regulated, semi regulated and non-regulated markets.

“Our aim is to be the number one Pharmaceutical manufacturing and distribution Company in Malawi with accreditations of Pharmacy, Medicines and Poisons Board (PMPB), Malawi, Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA)-UK and Medicines Control Council (MCC)-South Africa, with a vision to manufacture, distribute and export high quality, efficacious and safe pharmaceutical products to regulated, semi regulated and non-regulated markets,” said Shibu.

He said 99 percent of the drugs consumed by the country are imported from other countries hence the relevance of Crown Pharmaceutical to produce lifesaving essential medicines.

Shibu said the establishment of the company has a wide ranging short, medium to long term economic benefits like job openings and forex generation.

“There are employment opportunities for 500 personnel in technical and non-technical areas as you are aware most of the drugs used in the country are imported but with local production from us the economy will be making an annual foreign exchange savings of US$36 Million.

“Because will also be aiming for the export market, Crown Pharmaceuticals there will be an annual forex generation of US$10 million by exporting pharmaceutical products in the beginning and it will increase substantially when products are exported to South Africa and the European Union in the second year,” said Shibu.

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