Pakistan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association held a gathering to celebrate 60 years of Pharmaceutical Industry in Pakistan on August 28, 2008 at Lahore. Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani was the Chief Guest. The event was attended by Provincial ministers, Parliamentary Secretary of Health, industry entrepreneurs, professionals, officials of the Ministry of Health, other government officials and other prominent persons.
PPMA Chairman Mr. Kashif Sajjad Sheikh in his address highlighted the industry achievements over the past years. He apprised the audience that starting from a virtual zero at the time of inception of Pakistan, the Pharmaceutical Industry is now worth more than 100 billion rupees. He said that the people of Pakistan have greater access to quality medicines at affordable prices because of the development of national industry. He pointed out that the national Pharma industry has always risen to the occasion whenever any calamity hit the country. Pakistan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers have also been exporting to South Asia, Central Asia, South East Asia, and Africa. Mr. Kashif Sajjad Sheikh also pointed out the various difficulties faced by the industry. He said Government needs to develop a consistent and rational drug Pricing Policy. He also mentioned that manifold increase in the cost of raw and packaging materials, increase in freight due to oil price increase, increase in wages, and increase in the price of utilities like electricity and gas which have created extreme difficulties for the price regulated pharmaceutical industry. Chairman PPMA stressed the need for having a rational and transparent pricing policy and an immediate grant of price increase to bring the industry out of crisis.
Speaking on the occasion the chief guest Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani, Prime Minister of Pakistan, appreciated the contribution of pharma industry towards the improvement of healthcare system and the economy of Pakistan by providing high quality medicines at affordable prices. He also appreciated the role of industry during the times of immense hardships by providing free drugs to the affected population. The Prime Minister said that his government is committed to improve the healthcare situation in the country and we expect the same level of commitment from all components of health system including pharma industry. He also announced that the government will look into all the policies governing the pharmaceutical industry and create a joint commission with Ministry of Health to implement Pharma Vision.