Ashfaque Choudhury: The medical and drug industries in Bangladesh are some of the fastest-growing industries in the country.
It was the third-largest medical and drug industry in South Asia, with an estimated market size of US$3.3 billion in 2020.
In 2020, the industry earned more than 13% of the country’s GDP, which is a big part of the economy.
The industry is characterized by a large number of players, both local and foreign, providing a wide range of services and products. Drug makers, distributors, wholesalers, retailers, hospitals, clinics, and people who do home health care are all part of this industry. The industry is also mostly split between generic and brand-name drugs, with generic drugs making up the majority of the market.
The industry has expanded significantly in recent years as a result of factors like the rise in medical facilities, the accessibility of affordable drugs, and the rising demand for medical services.
The government has also played an important role in promoting the industry by providing incentives such as tax breaks, subsidized loans, and other assistance programs. In order to further support the industry, the government has also implemented several reforms, including the Drug Price Regulatory Authority (DPRA), which is an independent body established in Bangladesh in 2017 to regulate the prices of essential drugs and medical devices.
The DPRA is responsible for ensuring access to safe, effective, and quality medicines at an affordable price for the people of Bangladesh. The DPRA is headed by a Director General and composed of six members appointed by the Government of Bangladesh. The members of the DPRA are experts in the fields of pharmaceuticals, health, and economics. The DPRA is responsible for setting the maximum retail price (MRP) of drugs, monitoring drug prices, and conducting investigations into pricing irregularities.
The DPRA is also in charge of making sure that the rules of the Drug Price Control Order (DPCO) 2017 are followed.
Sources say that the government plans to reach its goal of universal health coverage (UHC) for all of its citizens by 2032.
Bangladesh’s pharmaceutical companies are now working together to reach the goal. However, there have been some obstacles in the industry in the last few days, mainly because of the price hike for gas.
Industry insiders say that with the rise of gas prices, the price of essential medicines will also touch the sky.
Though industry insiders still think that the future of the drug industry looks promising, the country is already the world’s third-largest producer of generic drugs, and it has the potential to become a major global player in the pharmaceutical industry.
The government has been investing heavily in the sector, and there has been growth in the number of new drug manufacturers and facilities. This is expected to continue in the future as the government looks to increase its share of the global market.
Additionally, Bangladesh is well-positioned to benefit from the increasing demand for generic drugs due to rising healthcare costs worldwide. This could lead to an increase in export revenue for the country.
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