Economy

Jawaharlal Nehru Pharma City to emerge as hub for drug manufacture, R&D

G. Srinivasan Visakhapatnam | Updated on February 09, 2011


The Jawaharlal Nehru Pharma City (JNPC), a pharma sector specific Special Economic Zone (SEZ), is buzzing with activity as 27 units have begun production in joint venture with drug majors from Germany and Japan.

Jointly floated as a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) by the Ramky Group and the Andhra Pradesh Industrial Infrastructure Corporation (APIIC), and located 36 km south of Visakhapatnam, the pharma sector SEZ is spread over 611 acres, out of a total of 2,143 acres, with assortment of facilities needed for the industry, the Chief Executive Officer, Ramky Pharma City (India) Ltd, Dr P.P. Lal Krishna, told a group of visiting journalists from the Capital on a sponsored tour by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.

Designed to host bulk drug, chemical, fine chemical and allied industries, the SEZ has plans for establishing an Advanced Analytical Testing Laboratory, container terminals, truck terminals, tank form storage systems and warehouses, he said adding that training centres to bridge the gap between academia and industry would also be established.

Growing imports

Concerned with growing imports from China, Dr Lal Krishna said that the SEZ would attract and make full use of domestically available “ready access to intermediates/DMF/eDMF material at competitive prices due to large number of approved vendors and significant design capabilities for manufacturing assets in manufacturing intermediates, APIs, formulations, biotech products and herbals”.

With India having made steady headway post-1970 Patent Act, the country has earned a place among the top pharma companies in the world in research, chemistry skills, engineering, regulatory compliance and intellectual property (IP) management, facilitating most foreign companies to consider setting up units here, he added.

Dr Lal Krishna said that companies could leverage low-cost benefits in terms of production, R&D costs and clinical trial costs as compared with Europe or North America, in addition to significantly lower plant design and erection costs. He said the SEZ has common infrastructure and facilities, including hazardous waste management facility with incinerator, secured landfall, 12 MLD capacity effluent treatment plant with multiple effect evaporator and 20 MLD water treatment plant in place, besides exclusive ready-built space for individual R&D purpose. He said the SEZ has environmental park level clearances which spare two years of time and savings of 40 per cent of project cost due to its developed infrastructure.

Reputed specialists

He said the JNPC has been designed and guided by reputed specialists including JTC Corporation, Jurong-Singapore (design and master plan) and Pricewaterhouse Coopers (consultant and advisor for SEZ) for administration and operations and maintenance of the pharma city. With already 8,000 direct employment in the existing units and in the development of other infrastructure, the pharma city would generate employment for 30,000 once fully functional.

geeyes@thehindu.co.in

Published on February 08, 2011

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