DTI eyeing Japanese pharma firms to invest in PH


The Department of Trade and Industry-the Board of Investments (DTI-BOI) is eyeing Japanese pharmaceutical firms to invest in the Philippines.

DTI Undersecretary and BOI Managing Head Ceferino Rodolfo disclosed this during the Philippine Pharmaceutical Industry Updates for Japan Webinar organized by BOI and the Foreign Trade Service Corps together with the Kansai Pharmaceutical Industries Association (KPIA) in May 20, 2021.

“As we work to Build Back a Better Philippines, we recognize the importance of our international partners like Japan. With the developments in health insurance schemes, health systems, and increasing investments in public health, the Philippines can serve as Japan’s market for pharmaceutical products,” he said.

The event was also supported by the Philippine Consulate General in Osaka and the Japan Pharmaceuticals Manufacturers Association (JPMA) as it managed to attract attendees and representatives from more than 250 Japanese companies engaged not only in the pharmaceutical industry but also in related industries such as medical devices and participants from the academe.

“The number of participants to this webinar shows that there is great interest in the Philippine pharmaceutical market. We have learned that the Philippine government is making huge efforts in promoting the industry and improving the access of Filipino people to pharmaceutical products. We believe that your country is an attractive business destination and we hope that more Japanese pharmaceutical companies will operate in the Philippines. We also wish to deepen our cooperation for this industry,” Takashi Kunieda, KPIA Director-General, said during the event.

Rodolfo said that it is imperative to strengthen the country’s partnership with Japan particularly in the pharmaceutical sector, including in the areas of research and development, product development, and innovation, pointing out that the Philippine pharmaceutical market has an estimated value of $4.6 billion, with around 46 manufacturers, 650 importers, and 4,800 distributors with around 98 percent of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) sourced from abroad as imports have grown by 15 percent between 2015 to 2019.

“In general, our local pharmaceutical companies have capabilities for basic research, formulation development, clinical studies and trials, and pilot-scale production up to commercial production. We are capable of manufacturing oral solid dosages, liquid oral preparations, liquids and semi-solids topical preparations, small and big volume parenteral, and dry powder inhalers and effervescent,” BOI-Manufacturing Industries Service Director Evariste Cagatan stated.

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