DMPQ- India enjoys an important position in the global pharmaceuticals sector. Discuss this statement and also mention the steps taken by Government of India to Promote Pharmaceuticals Industry.

India enjoys an important position in the global pharmaceuticals sector. It is the largest provider of generic medicines globally, occupying a 20% share in global supply by volume, and also supplies 50% of global demand for vaccines the largest in the world. India ranks 3rd worldwide for production by volume and 13th by value, thereby accounting for around 10% of the world’s production by volume and 1.5% by value.

The pharmaceutical industry was valued at $ 36.7 bn in 2018. The market is expected to expand at a CAGR of 22.4% over 2015–20 to reach $ 55 billion. India’s pharmaceutical exports stood at US$ 17.27 billion in FY18 and have reached US$ 19.14 billion in FY19. Pharmaceutical exports include bulk drugs, intermediates, drug formulations, biologicals, Ayush & herbal products and surgical.

Generic drugs, with 71% market share, form the largest segment of the Pharmaceutical industry in India. This is set to grow as exports of generics to the US rise, as branded drugs worth US$ 55 billion will become off-patent during 2017-2019.

Some of the initiatives taken by the government to promote the pharmaceutical sector in India are as follows:

  • The Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) announced its plans to start a single-window facility to provide consents, approvals and other information. The move is aimed at giving a push to the Make in India initiative.
  • The Government of India is planning to set up an electronic platform to regulate online pharmacies under a new policy, in order to stop any misuse due to easy availability.
  • The Government of India unveiled ‘Pharma Vision 2020’ aimed at making India a global leader in end-to-end drug manufacture. Approval time for new facilities has been reduced to boost investments.
  • The government introduced mechanisms such as the Drug Price Control Order and the National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority to deal with the issue of affordability and availability of medicines.
  • 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is allowed under the automatic route for greenfield pharma, whereas in brownfield pharma 74% is allowed under the automatic route and thereafter through government approval route.


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