The government has prepared two schemes for promoting domestic manufacturing of bulk drugs to reduce the country’s dependence on imports, Parliament was informed on Tuesday.
As per the data from various Port Offices of the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO), the percentage of raw materials imported from China in terms of value stood at 72.40 per cent for 2019-20, Union Minister D V Sadananda Gowda said in reply to a question in the Lok Sabha.
The government assessed the impact on the availability of active pharmaceutical ingredients (API), intermediates and key starting materials (KSM) for which India is critically dependent on China, he added.
Accordingly, the government formed an inter-ministerial committee on February 6, 2020 to address the issue of drug security in the country, the Minister for Chemicals and Fertilisers said. The committee in its report submitted on February 27 observed that there are 58 APIs for which the country is heavily dependent on China, he added.
“A Technical Committee was also constituted on 02.03.2020 to make recommendations for the revival of fermentation industry, new technologies for manufacturing of APIs including its backward integration, costing of the projects and identification of strategic business models,” Gowda said.
The committee also examined the 58 APIs identified by the Drug Security Committee and recommended a scheme for 53 APIs, he added.
“On the basis of the recommendations of the committee, the Department has prepared two schemes for promoting domestic manufacturing of bulk drugs which were approved by the Cabinet on 20.03.2020 viz. Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme and scheme for Promotion of Bulk Drug Parks,” Gowda said.
Under the PLI scheme, financial incentives shall be given based on sales made by selected manufacturers for 41 products which cover all the identified 53 APIs, he added.