Drugs companies say near collapse

via Drugs companies say near collapse 16 August 2014

ZIMBABWE’S pharmaceutical industry is lobbying government to implement protectionist measures, saying imports from the region and across the globe have brought the once vibrant sector to its knees.

The Pharmaceutical Manufacturers’ Association (PMA) also asked government to lower imports on packaging material as well as to push for the removal of non-tariff barriers affecting exports to neighbouring South Africa.

“The industry, once the envy of the region and only second to South Africa in the SADC, region is now on the verge of collapse and facing numerous challenges emanating essentially from an unfavourable policy and legislative environment which favours importation of drugs at the expense of locally manufacturing them,” PMA said in a position paper seen by The Source.

“In order to save and resuscitate local pharmaceutical manufacturing companies, the government of Zimbabwe should come up with measures to protect the industry from cheap, substandard and counterfeit drugs imported or smuggled into the country.”

The industry also wants a 30 percent price preference to local manufacturing companies against imported drugs on all public tenders. Currently, the local companies enjoy a 10 percent price preference.

“Protection is not a bad word. It has been exercised with very positive results by most countries including Zimbabwe. This will give the industry time and space to recover and gain global competitiveness,” it said.

PMA also asked government to negotiate with South African authorities to allow drugs from Zimbabwe entry into South Africa by road through the Beitbridge border post saying the current arrangement which requires drugs to be air-freighted was not sustainable.

“If this fails, the Zimbabwean authorities should reciprocate by banning entry of all drug imports from South Africa by road through Beitbridge or any other border post except by air-freight through Harare International Airport,” the drug manufacturers said.


  • comment-avatar
    tongogara 7 years ago

    Reduce your prices and no-one will import. Be competitive and stop mourning. You just want your good lives and high salaries to be protected at the expense of pple’s health. Deal with the inefficiencies in your system. Why are your locally manufactured drugs so expensive? We tired of your punitive prices. Zimbabwe deserves better. You can close shop if you so wish!

  • comment-avatar
    Stanley 7 years ago

    I think this PMA is stupid- ban vital tablets which make people survive so that they make profit . Sort out your inefficiencies rather than call for price controls. If South Africa can make cheaper generic drugs why can’t you.

  • comment-avatar
    John Thomas 7 years ago

    So we must pay more for medicines so that these incompetent persons can continue in business. Get competitive or shut your factories you useless bunch of good for nothing’s.

  • comment-avatar
    jkaseke 7 years ago

    That is a tired headline

  • comment-avatar
    Mlimo 7 years ago

    90 percent of drugs are donated as 90 percent of Zimbabweans can’t afford medicines. So what are they going on about.