PharmexcilThe Pharmaceutical Exports Promotion Council (Pharmexcil) has been nominated by the Department of Pharmaceuticals as the co-ordinating agency to arrange fast track drug approvals and registrations for India pharma exporters to the Commonwealth Independent States (CIS) member, Tajikistan.

The decision was taken in a recent bilateral trade meeting between India and Tajikistan. This is the first time a country has agreed to coordinate of the work related to drug registrations by Pharmexcil. As an outcome of the meeting, the government of Tajikistan has agreed to approve the Indian applications for registration and drug approvals in a fast track mode and to consider enhancing imports of pharmaceuticals from India, according to Pharmexcil sources.

"We will now send a letter to the drug regulatory authority of Tajikistan and will coordinate with the Indian Embassy there to hasten the procedures. We are expecting the replies within 10 to 15 days and will also give a feedback to the ministry," said Dr P V Appaji, executive director, Pharmexcil.

The Pharmexcil has already received a few comments from the concerned stake holders in the industry. The industry responded that the Drug Regulatory Authorities of Tajikistan (GENSEL) is seeking documents on par with the standards of the European standards. The council will discuss the issue with the regulatory authority to convince that the documents as per the common CIS standards for drug approval could be considered for approval of Indian pharma exports.

As per the Pharmexcil data, pharma exports from India to Tajikistan is Rs 8.55 crore with a growth of around 10 per cent during April 2006-March 2007. Several initiatives were carried out by the Pharmexcil and the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilisers to bring in faster trade exchanges between Tajikistan and India to support the Indian pharma companies with market in the country.

The council has requested its members to inform long pending drug registration applications, if any, with the Ministry of Health, Tajikistan at the earliest for taking up under fast-track approvals. Members are also requested to kindly inform any issues/inputs, govt/public procurement information in Tajikistan for taking up with their authorities.

According to available reports, the pharmaceutical market of Tajikistan is estimated at more than US $80 million. The largest suppliers of pharmaceutical products in Tajikistan are USA, Turkey, Russia, Ukraine, Hungary, Austria and other countries.