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COVID-19 restricts Indian pharma export growth to 7.6 per cent in FY’20

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India exported pharma products to 202 destinations in FY’20

The Indian pharma exports have witnessed a growth of 7.57 per cent in FY 2019-20 as against 10.72 per cent in the last fiscal year. It has touched $20.58 billion as against $19.13 billion during the same period in the last year.

The quarterly performance of the pharma export decreased significantly to -2.97 in the fourth quarter as against a good performance in the first three quarters (Apr-Dec 2019) with a cumulative growth rate of 11.5 per cent. The first, second and third quarters recorded 11.21 per cent, 8.69 per cent and 14.64 per cent growth respectively.

In January 2020, pharma exports had registered the growth of 11.72 per cent while last year, at the same time the growth recorded was 11.5 per cent. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent measures taken to prevent its spread, pharma exports decreased in February and March and growth rates have gone down to 7.7 per cent, resulting in negative growth of – 2.97 per cent in the fourth quarter.

“Usually Indian pharma exports during February and March are quite brisk, and around 22-23 per cent in the first ten months (Apr-Jan). Having seen a good pace of exports in the first three quarters and price stabilisation in the US, it was estimated that FY 2020 exports would reach $22 billion. However, COVID-19 pandemic has impacted Indian pharma exports to a certain extent and brought down the estimated pharma exports of $22 billion to $20.58 billion with an overall growth of 7.57 per cent instead of double-digit growth. We have seen significant growth in our exports to other European countries, Germany: 13.07 per cent, France: 11.77 per cent and Belgium: 6.94 per cent,” informed Ravi Uday Bhaskar, Director General, Pharmaceuticals Export Promotion Council of India (Pharmexcil).

Dr Dinesh Dua, Chairman Pharmexcil, commented, “This drop in growth rate from 12 per cent to 7.57 per cent in March 2020 is on account of the lockdown, compounded by the restrictions on pharma exports. On a regular basis, we have been interacting with the respective authorities expressing our concerns, hoping that the situation gets better. We see some positive signs for our exports performance in the coming quarter.”

Component wise, exports performance of drug formulations and biologicals were impressive and contributed to almost 72 per cent of the total exports. It recorded a 9.5 per cent growth in FY2020.

However, exports of bulk drugs and drug intermediates, the second-largest category has negatively grown by -0.73 per cent which brings down the overall performance.

Whereas, vaccines and surgicals recorded 22 per cent and 10.5 per cent growth, respectively.

During the FY’20, India has exported pharmaceuticals to 202 destinations.

Major export destinations for India Pharma Inc  

North America: First largest exporting region for Indian pharma with 34 per cent share. Overall exports to North America have recorded 15.11 per cent growth

USA: Pharma products worth $ 6.7 billion were exported to the US with 15.8 per cent growth. This has constituted almost 32.74 per cent of our total exports

Africa: Second largest exporting region with 17 per cent share. Exports to the Africa region has grown up at 2.24 per cent growth. Tanzania has recorded the highest growth rate of 30.18 per cent growth

Europe: Third largest exporting region with 15 per cent share. 4.54 per cent growth rate recorded in exports to the EU region. The Netherlands has recorded the highest growth rate of 55 per cent

CIS: Indian exports to the CIS region have grown at 14.8 per cent growth. Russia, the fourth largest importing partner, has recorded 13.8 per cent growth

Middle East: Exports to Turkey have grown at 31.6 per cent and to Iran at 13.15 per cent

Asia (Excluding Middle East): Exports to this region have had significant growth of 11.51 per cent. Exports to Bangladesh recorded 29.37 per cent growth, touching $251 million.

China: Last year, it was $230 million in FY19 with 14.8 per cent growth. This financial year, during Apr-Dec 19 India exported $228 million with almost 35.8 per cent growth. For FY 20 (Apr-Mar), Indian exports to China are $288 million with 25 per cent growth

Japan: India exported $196 million pharma products in FY 2020 with 11.66 per cent growth

Source: Pharmexcil

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