Kochi: Doors have been opened for the state-run Kerala State Drugs and Pharmaceuticals (KSDP) for overseas markets with the World Health Organisation (WHO) having accorded the good manufacturing practice (GMP) certification to the drug maker.
The GMP certification is given to those drug units, which maintain international safety and quality standards in production. Products of GMP certified companies are qualified to be sold at anywhere in the world.
This will be a shot in the arm for the ailing drug maker, which is of late showing signs of recovery. Even at present, say KSDP officials, the company has been receiving orders from abroad, but for want of GMP certification the company is not able to cater to their needs.
“GMP certification will help us market our products outside India. There has been demand from foreign countries, but we cannot entertain them in the absence of GMP certification. Now, we have become eligible and are ready to export medicines at reasonable rates,” said KSDP Chairman C B Chandrababu.
The company based in the coastal town of Alappuzha produces over 50 types of life-saving medicines in capsules, tablets, liquids and powder. Currently, bulk of its production goes to Kerala State Medical Service Corporation Ltd (KSMSCL), the lone supplier of medicines to the government-run hospitals and medical colleges. The rest is supplied to Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Jan Aushadhi.
The government has been taking various steps to nurse back the ailing firm to normal health. Recently it has pumped in Rs32 crore for completing various projects including a non-beta lactam and injection plants. The company’s main plant is undergoing modernization to augment capacity.
The company commissioned a dry powder injection unit last May at beta-lactam plant that was set up five years ago at a cost of Rs10.5 crore. The plant has capacity to produce 11 types of modern antibiotics adhering to international standards.
Once the non-beta lactam plant is commissioned, expectedly in a month or so, KSDP can produce medicines at low-cost for cancer and organ transplanted patients, which now government dispenses free to poor patients.
The government expects that in the current fiscal ending March 2018, the company would come out of the red. A recent statement issued by the office of the industries minister said that company made profit in the first six months of the current year. However, all efforts of businessbenchmark.news to crosscheck it did not succeed as company’s financial manager Abraham Thomas declined to disclose the half-yearly results. More shockingly, the public sector company has not displayed its financial details on its website.
In order to bail out the company from accumulated loss, the government is exploring the possibility of converting the government loan that it provided to the company. The government aims to make KSDP a Rs500-crore company employing 500-odd people in five years from now.