India must be ready to meet growth in Bio-services sector: Expert

India makes pharmaceutical products worth US$ 30 billion every year and is a leading producer of generics.

The Dollar Business Bureau BioPharma The bio-services sector which is currently valued at US$ 5-6 billion is set to increase to US$ 50 billion soon and we should be prepared to meet this growth. V K Subburaj, Secretary, Department of Pharmaceuticals, Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilisers, made the above statement at a round-table meeting on ‘Unleashing Opportunities in Bio-Services Including Contract Research & Manufacturing’, in New Delhi, on Friday. Stating that India makes pharmaceutical products worth US$ 30 billion every year and is a leading producer of generics, the Secretary expressed hope that the bio-pharmaceuticals will take over the sector in future. Speaking at the meet, the Secretary further stated that the conducive atmosphere for growth has been missing in the past few years, however, the government is making efforts for active facilitation of the easing of regulations. We have all the hardware, but software is missing and that is the reason why we are lagging behind, he added. While stating that more than 30,000 clinical trials in the US and 4500 clinical trials in Israel, take place every year, the Secretary informed that the applications being filed for the clinical trials in India have come down from 500 to 25 in the past three years. He said, ‘one job in clinical sector creates five jobs in IT sector’, adding that unless India provides equal opportunities, we will not grow. Meanwhile, Eswara Reddy, Joint Controller General (JCG), Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, informed that the regulations were now facilitating the bio-services by being transparent. Further stating that the Drugs and Cosmetic Act was silent on the case of clinical trials, the JCG said it’s the regulations that are regulating the area of clinical trials. Accreditation of the clinical trials is being done now and a Track & Trace System will soon be introduced for drugs in domestic market, he informed. The round table on unleashing opportunities in bio-services was held on the occasion of the Global Exhibition on Services (GES), in which the bio-services was also discussed as one of the prime focus areas. The challenges to be addressed to further the growing opportunities in the sector and revitalization of the sector with enabling policies were discussed at the round table meet. Bio-services is the second largest sector of biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry in India with about 33% market share.    

This article was published on April 27, 2015 – 1:45 pm IST