The Indian pharma industry is on a good growth path and is likely to be in the top 10 global markets in value term by 2020, according to the PwC – CII report titled “India Pharma Inc: Gearing up for the next level of growth,”
High burden of disease, good economic growth leading to higher disposable incomes, improvements in healthcare infrastructure and improved healthcare financing are driving growth in the domestic market, the report highlighted.
The Indian pharma industry has been growing at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 15% over the last five years and has significant growth opportunities. However, for the industry to sustain this robust growth rate till 2020, companies will have to rethink their business strategy. They will have to adopt new business models and think of innovative ideas to service their evolving customers faster and better.
Sujay Shetty, leader, pharma life sciences, PwC India, said, “The industry has seen many regulatory interventions over the last one year, which will require careful consideration by Pharma companies as they plan their future strategies.
Pharma companies will continue to grow both organically and inorganically through alliances and partnerships. They will continue to focus on improving operational efficiency and productivity. Developments in the health insurance, medical technology and mobile telephony can help the growth of the pharma industry by removing financial and physical barriers to healthcare access in India, he added.”
Rajiv Modi, chairman CII pharma summit & vice chairman, CII Gujarat State Council said, “The report highlights the different levers that have fuelled the growth of the Indian market, emerging new business models, as well as the key success factors that need to be kept in mind to achieve sustainable long-term growth.”
Meanwhile, the COVID-19 outbreak has resulted in major disruptions in import of bulk drug and Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (APIs) to India. This looming threat of supply chain disruption and border tension with China have starkly highlighted India's vulnerability in such a critical area as drugs and pharmaceuticals.
In this backdrop, as part of the multi-pronged response to the medical emergency prevailing in the country due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the government's Rs 10,000 crore pharma package to boost manufacturing of APIs and reduce import dependence has come at a very right time.
The scheme on Promotion of Bulk Drug Park and Performance Linked Incentive Scheme aims to promote the pharmaceutical industry and to ensure drug security, self-sufficiency, and continuous supply of essential medicines to Indians at affordable prices.
Mr S Sridhar, Chair, FICCI Pharma Committee and MD, Pfizer said, "Making India self-sufficient in APIs and KSMs will go a long way in enhancing India's end-to-end pharmaceuticals capabilities and move towards an Atmanirbhar Bharat. We applaud the Government for launching the Productivity Linked Incentive scheme for APIs and KSMs along with the Scheme for Promotion of Bulk Drug Parks in the country. FICCI encourages companies and entrepreneurs to make the most of this opportunity, invest in the API ecosystem and contribute towards enhancing India's capabilities and capacities. We also believe that this is a first step towards what must be a sustained effort to help create a thriving API industry in the country. In subsequent phases, we hope to see measures that enable access to easier loans, enhanced taxation benefits, priority issue resolution across Ministries and further improvement in access to infrastructure."
He added, "In the long-term, we hope to not only see India as being self-reliant in APIs and KSMs, but also emerge as a hub for global exports. This will also require a mission-like focus on aligning manufacturing and regulatory standards with the best in the world and helping the industry achieve globally competitive costs. With a shared long-term strategy, vision and commitment, the industry and government can together achieve this vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat in APIs and KSMs. We thank the government again for today's progressive steps in this direction.'
Mr Dilip Chenoy, Secretary General, FICCI said, "This scheme will help promote self-reliance in active pharmaceutical ingredients and key starting materials. This is very important from the perspective of Atmanirbhar Bharat, Make in India and strengthening the supply chain to make India Pharmacy of the World. These schemes will also result in significant generation of jobs. I am happy to know that several firms have expressed 'huge' interest in participating."
"The government policy to encourage the fermentation-based industry will also help build self-reliance as China has gained importance in fermentation-based APIs namely, antibiotics and vitamins. This will help the sector regain the dominance that was lost over the years. The investment in creating bulk drug parks is an important step in the right direction for the development of the industry. This would be helpful in exploiting the benefits arising due to the optimization of resources and economies of scale and help industry meet the requirements of standards of the environment at a reduced cost through innovative methods of common Waste Management System," added Mr Chenoy.
FICCI believes that India should not only aim at just becoming self-reliant but global exporters for the Bulk Drug Industry. "We should also look at ways of using the existing domestic capacities to produce APIs which are lying idle," he said.
Overall, we believe the new policy is a bold announcement by the government and will give the necessary fillip to the API industry in India. This will surely work well in the creation of a self-sufficient healthcare ecosystem in the country. This will help safeguard healthcare security and create the ecosystem for a strong Indian API industry.