Egypt produces about 85% of its pharmaceutical needs locally, and imports only 15% from abroad, according to Ali Auf, Head of the General Division of Drug Traders at the Federation of Egyptian Chambers of Commerce (FEDCOC).
Auf added that manufacturing what Egypt imports locally requires extensive technology and has special specifications, which are not currently available in the country.
He elaborated that oncological drugs cost about EGP 200,000per patient, and the current local manufacturing for this type of medicine, costs will reach less than one-fourth of the current costs.
Medicine is an important strategic commodity, and that it cannot be dispensed with, he noted.
“The development of pharmaceutical industry is one of the biggest challenges facing Egypt,” Auf said, “Nevertheless, the projects that President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi opened in the pharmaceutical sector will ensure the sector takes a quantum leap over the next ten years.”
He said that if the state does not keep pace with developmentsin the pharmaceutical industry, whether in terms of its basic structure or technology related to it, the government will resort to buying medicine from abroad. This may impose a specific drug policy on the country.
“Egypt looks at the drug sector with a different view during the current period, and that medical and pharmaceutical projects launched by the President are a shift for medicine industry in Egypt during the next 50 years,” Auf said,“Consequently, the establishment of the GYPTO Pharma medical city aims to protect competition and provide needs of Egyptian market.”
Auf also said, “Accordingly, it is expected that drug prices will be stable within a year. This pharmaceutical city is designed with the highest level of technology and the highest current and future quality standards.”
Additionally, medical and pharmaceutical projects inaugurated by the President will shift the pharmaceutical industry in Egypt over the next 50 years, he added.
Covering 180,000 sqm, the city is one of the largest of its kind in the Middle East, and is equipped with the latest technologies and global systems in drug production. It will be situated in the Cairo region of Khanka.