Botswana seeks partners to start manufacturing drugs

By Nick Taylor

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical industry

The Botswanan government is seeking to initiate local pharma manufacturing, which would lower drug prices, by entering into public-private partnerships (PPP), according to a report by F&S.

Establishing a local pharma manufacturing industry would end Botswana’s reliance on costly imports but the country currently lacks the technical capabilities needed for drug production.

Frost & Sullivan (F&S) believes the government is attempting to rectify this situation by launching PPP initiatives. These will utilise the expertise of overseas generic manufacturers, mainly from Asia-Pacific, to ease the reliance on imports in the medium- to long-term.

Ishe Zingoni, research analyst at F&S, added that Indian and Thai generic manufacturers are at the forefront of the trend to partner to enter the Botswanan market.

Companies taking these actions will gain access to a growth market. F&S valued the generic market in 2008 at $73.7m (€53.9m) and expects it to grow to $168.8m by 2015. Similarly, the branded market is expected to grow from $62.8m in 2008 to $116.1m by 2015.

Growth of the generic sector is underpinned by drugs coming off patent and the need for donor organisations, which play a significant role in therapeutic distribution in Botswana, to cut costs in the current economic climate.

"Mass treatment programmes which had relied on donated branded drugs are now switching to cheaper generic versions​”, explained Zingoni, adding that “local production of generic drugs, once in place, is set to expand coverage of these mass roll-out programmes​."

Infectious diseases, such as HIV/AIDS and malaria, are primary targets of these treatment programmes and consequently represent potential market opportunities for generic manufacturers setting up in Botswana.

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