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Dr Viranchi Shah elected as national president of IDMA

Laxmi Yadav, Mumbai
Saturday, January 15, 2022, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

Dr Viranchi Shah, director of Saga Laboratories, has been elected as national president of Indian Drug Manufacturers Association (IDMA) for a period of two years.

IDMA held its annual general meeting through video conferencing on January 6, 2022 and approved the election of Dr Shah as chairman.

With an array of qualifications – B. Pharm, MBA, PhD, Dr Shah has been working as an office-bearer of the association for the last 12 years and held several positions on various occasions. He was the senior national vice president before being elected as national president. Earlier he was chairman of Gujarat state board of IDMA.

He took the charge from outgoing national president Mahesh Doshi on January 7, 2022.

Soon after taking charge, Dr Shah has formed an emergency response team to ensure supply of essential drugs in the country amid ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Besides this, teams have also been appointed by him for digital initiative and innovation which will contribute to robust growth of the drug industry. Strong healthcare industry is crucial for a nation’s success, said the newly elected national president of IDMA.

“Globally, India ranked third in terms of pharmaceutical production by volume. We do have the potential of reaching number one in the coming 5-10 years. Today the pharma industry stood at USD 45 billion. However, if it sets bold aspirations to grow at 11-12 per cent CAGR, it can reach USD 120-130 billion by 2030. Government’s initiatives such as Atmanirbhar Bharat, aiming to reduce dependence on China for active pharmaceutical ingredients and Ayushman Bharat empowering low- and medium-income people to get access to healthcare will help the industry achieve the target,” he said.

“People are focussing on wellness rather than illness due to Covid. Hence, there is a big wellness market. On the other hand, global firms are exploring the possibility of shifting their base from China to India. There is a big demand for Indian drugs. Putting all these together, there are certain areas we thought we should be focusing on in order to take this industry forward as a strategic industry. It is no longer a foreign exchange earning industry but it is also a very strategic industry,” he added.

Spelling out his vision for the industry, Dr Shah said “For longer term, I have laid down four important steps, called RITE. R stood for regulatory reforms wherein we will be working closely with stakeholders to put forward regulatory reforms that need to be done in India in line with global regulations. These include quicker and faster approval of drugs, decriminalization of certain offenses under Drugs and Cosmetics Act. This will help the industry grow faster.”

I stood for innovation. Currently, Indian industry is known as manufacturer of generics and branded generics. There are technological advancements bringing drug costs lower but the Indian industry is hardly focussing on them. We have set up a committee focusing on innovation and R & D bringing experts and trying to understand how Indian industry can focus on R&D as part of their growth strategy. R&D will help Indian industry bring out new drugs in the next five to ten years, he pointed out.

Our next focus is team building which will identify gaps in bringing academic institutions on board and introducing digitally driven new technologies in pharma, he stated.

Last is entrepreneurship and valuation creation. A number of entrepreneurs are looking for rapid business expansion. We want to increase their value creation, he concluded.


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