INNOVATION SHOULD BE GIVEN A BOOST THROUGH TAX INCENTIVES”

Business Today|June 14, 2020

INNOVATION SHOULD BE GIVEN A BOOST THROUGH TAX INCENTIVES”
In the middle of the current pandemic, India has emerged as a credible supplier of essential medicines. Four Indian pharma companies have just signed a partnership agreement with US-based Gilead for supply of its experimental coronavirus drug Remdesivir. Satish Reddy, President, Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance (which represents 24 leading pharma firms) and Chairman of Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories, speaks to Business Today’s Joe C. Mathew about how home-grown firms are serving India and the world during the Covid-19 crisis.
Joe C. Mathew

What has been the impact of lockdown on the Indian pharmaceutical industry?

The industry is not at pre-pandemic levels of capacity utilisation. On an average, we are at the 60-70 per cent mark at the moment. We continue to maintain adequate inventory, despite the challenges in import and export due to delays at airports and ports across the country.

Did IPA member companies see a surge in business? How has the industry tackled lockdown linked disruptions?

There has been increased demand for active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and sales in a few markets such as the US, Europe and Russia have been good. Demand in India has dropped a bit due to the lockdown. Several companies have innovated to tide over the crisis – one example is the readiness kit we have deployed for sales representatives. The industry is also leveraging virtual platforms to facilitate healthcare access. Our company has a dedicated helpline for both doctors and patients to make medicines available wherever needed. We have a plan and have adapted our strategy to the new way of doing business. I do not foresee shortage of medicines or supply disruptions.

What are the lessons learnt?

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June 14, 2020