India vouches for safety, efficacy of its drugs

New Delhi, April 29 (IANS) India Monday vouched for the safety and efficacy of drugs manufactured by it and asked African countries not to mix patent issues with those of quality.

“India is the largest supplier of generic medicines in the world. These drugs are issued only after their quality and compatibility are checked,” said P.V. Appaji, director general of the Pharmaceutical Export Promotion Council.

Addressing African delegates and ministers at the India-Africa Policy Dialogue on Pharmaceuticals here, Appaji said that every country in the world was looking at affordable medicines.

“India is capable of manufacturing 95 percent of its medicines. There is no country where Indian medicines are not used,” he said.

“Don’t mix patent issues with quality issues,” he said.

World Bank representative S. Nagpal said: “In Africa, good quality affordable medicines are still problematica.”

Observing that his country has a huge disease burden of communicable and non-communicable diseases, Zimbabwe Health Minister Henry Madzorera said very little drug manufacturing was happening in the country.

“We are here to learn from India. We want to be sufficient at least to some extent,” he said.

African countries account for over 17 percent of India’s medicines and fine chemicals’ export.

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