After registering a flat growth last fiscal, India’s pharmaceutical exports are back on a growth path this fiscal, despite geopolitical challenges in global markets. Pharma exports are set to breach the $25 billion mark in total exports during this financial year. 

“The exports have grown by about 6 per cent till August this fiscal as per provisional data,” R Uday Bhaskar, Director General, Pharmaceuticals Export Promotion Council (Pharmexcil) told BusinessLine. The total exports increased 5.83 per cent in April - August 2022 to $10,523 million, compared to $9,943 million in the same period in previous year, he said.

India exported pharmaceuticals worth $24.6 billion in FY22. In the current financial year, pharma exports would not only breach the $25 billion mark but also grow much beyond it. ‘The Department of Commerce has given an export target of $27.43 billion for the current financial year (FY23). Given the current pace of exports, we are confident of achieving the target,” Bhaskar said.

Proving its worth

The revival of plant inspections which were halted or slowed down by global regulators and the beginning of treatments for non-Covid ailments are driving the growing demand for Indian products overseas, he added.

Notwithstanding initial fears of the possible adverse impact of the Russia-Ukraine war on exports, exports to Russia too registered a 4.54 per cent increase during April - August this year compared to the same period last year.

According to Chava Satyanarayana, Founder and CEO of Laurus Labs, during the pandemic too, the Indian pharma industry proved its worth in drugs and vaccines living up to the image of ‘Pharmacy of the World.’ This would boost global demand further for Indian pharma products, he added.

India has the maximum number of USFDA-approved manufacturing sites outside the US, and holds 18 per cent of global manufacturing sites catering to the US market. India supplies nearly 29 per cent of its total pharma exports to the US.

As on March 22, India has 4,573 market authorisations granted by the US drug regulator manufactured in units located in the country, while 1,678 authorisations were granted to Indian subsidiaries with overseas units.