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India holds a significant position in the worldwide pharmaceutical industry. Evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of India’s presence in this sector. Propose measures to address the weaknesses.

Topic: Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

5. India holds a significant position in the worldwide pharmaceutical industry. Evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of India’s presence in this sector. Propose measures to address the weaknesses. (250 words)

Difficulty level:  Moderate

Reference: Indian Express

Why the question:

The article discusses how India’s drug regulatory regime can enhance credibility for the country’s pharmaceutical industry.

Key Demand of the question:

To have a good understanding of the strengths and weaknesses in the pharmaceutical industry and to suggest adequate measures to address the issues.

Directive word: 

Evaluate – When you are asked to evaluate, you have to pass a sound judgement about the truth of the given statement in the question or the topic based on evidence.  You must appraise the worth of the statement in question. There is scope for forming an opinion here.

Structure of the answer:

Introduction: 

Begin by highlighting the extent of pharmaceutical industry in India.

Body:

First, mention the potential of pharma industry – India is the largest provider of generic drugs globally. Indian pharmaceutical sector supplies over 50% of global demand for various vaccines, 40% of generic demand in the US and 25% of all medicine in the UK. Globally, India ranks 3rd in terms of pharmaceutical production by volume and 14th by value.

Next, write about the limitations.

Next, give a point by point analysis of major areas of reforms needed such as revising the age old The New Drugs, Cosmetics and Medical Devices Act, need to bring in a regulatory structure in the context of e pharmacy and teleconsultations, better clarity in the issue of Licenses as per Drugs and Cosmetics Act (DCA) of 1940 etc.

Conclusion:

Conclude by saying that India should focus on a comprehensive, clear and concise regulatory structure meeting the needs of the new age pharmaceutical industry.