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PPMA chairman calls for overhaul of drug laws to tackle industry challenges

11:34 PM | 17 Apr, 2024
PPMA chairman calls for overhaul of drug laws to tackle industry challenges

LAHORE—The Pakistan Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association (PPMA) has emphasized the need to update the existing drug laws in line with global trends. This move would be in the best interests of patients and the pharmaceutical industry. 

The high input costs, highest inflation, and interest rates in Asia have caused local industries to shut down. Excessive regulations have led to the disappearance of multinationals, with only four MNCs currently operating in the country. These MNCs have recently reported historically high losses. This situation is affecting patients the most and is becoming increasingly worse.

PPMA Chairman Mian Khalid Misbah has stated that the government must intervene promptly to save the pharma industry in the country's greater interests and the suffering of humanity. He also mentioned that India and Bangladesh have updated their drug laws and are regulating the prices of only a few essential drugs while the rest are left to market forces. This has resulted in better medicine availability at relatively low prices due to open competition. These countries are earning billions of dollars through medicine exports.

Mr Misbah appreciated the Federal Government's decision to deregulate the prices of non-essential drugs, as it would provide much-needed support to the survival of the pharma industry and attract investment. However, he stated that much more needs to be done to bring the pharma sector's regulations up to par with those of neighbouring countries and make it an attractive investment market.

He added that the long delays in revising the prices of essential drugs have caused severe shortages in the country. For instance, the delay in revising the hardship price of Tegral, a seizure medicine, has resulted in its being sold at Rs3,000 or more, four times the proposed revised price. Such delays have resulted in counterfeit and smuggled medicines entering the market, ultimately affecting patients. Timely implementation of policies will improve medicine availability, attract FDI, and encourage MNCs to stay in Pakistan.

PPMA chairman suggested that the government should increase the health budget from 1% to 2% to provide free life-saving essential drugs to patients at government hospitals, similar to other countries in the world.

Daily Pakistan Global Web Desk

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Currency Rates in Pakistan Today - Pak Rupee to US Dollar, Euro, Dirham, Riyal 22 May 2024

 Pakistani currency rates against US Dollar and other currencies on May 22, 2024 (Wednesday) in open market.

USD to PKR rate today

US dollar was being quoted at 277.15 for buying and 280.05 for selling.

Euro moved down to 297 for buying and 300 for selling while British Pound rate is 349 for buying, and 352.5 for selling.

UAE Dirham AED was at 75.25 and Saudi Riyal came down to 73.50.

Today’s currency exchange rates in Pakistan - 22 May 2024

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 09:00 AM)
Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar USD 277.15 277.15
Euro EUR 297 300
UK Pound Sterling GBP 349 352.5
U.A.E Dirham AED 75.2 75.95
Saudi Riyal SAR 73.45 74.2
Australian Dollar AUD 183 184.8
Bahrain Dinar BHD 740.34 748.34
Canadian Dollar CAD 203 205
China Yuan CNY 38.51 38.91
Danish Krone DKK 40.52 40.92
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 35.7 36.05
Indian Rupee INR 3.34 3.45
Japanese Yen JPY 1.91 1.99
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 903.3 912.3
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 59.34 59.94
New Zealand Dollar NZD 170.11 172.11
Norwegians Krone NOK 25.92 26.22
Omani Riyal OMR 723.13 731.13
Qatari Riyal QAR 76.42 77.12
Singapore Dollar SGD 203 205
Swedish Korona SEK 25.98 26.28
Swiss Franc CHF 305.97 308.47
Thai Bhat THB 7.67 7.82

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