Ghanaian pharmaceutical firm ready to supply anti-retroviral drugs to other countries
Dr Yaw Adu Gyamfi, Chief Executive Officer of DANADAMS Pharmaceuticals Industry Limited, a Ghanaian firm, on Thursday gave the assurance that when given the opportunity, the company could supply other African countries with anti-retroviral drugs.
He said although it was the only pharmaceutical company engaged in anti-retroviral drugs production, it had the capacity to produce 131 million tablets and 12,000 capsules a month, but only produced 20 per cent because of low demand.
Dr Adu Gyamfi gave the assurance when Mr Michel Sidibe, Executive Director of United Nations AIDS (UNIADS), visited the company to find out how the drugs were produced as part of a familiarisation tour of the country.
DANADAMS which started operation in Ghana with a few anti-retroviral drugs can now boast of 42 different drugs including malaria and general pain killers.
Apart from periodically supplying the Ministry of Health and partners with the anti-retroviral drugs, the company also exports its drugs to Togo, Burkina Faso, La Cote d’Ivoire and the Gambia.
He called on government to support the company to acquire the World Health Organisation pre-qualification certificate to supply the drugs to other African countries.
Dr Adu Gyamfi explained that the company had not been able to win more international contracts because of the certificate and called on the stakeholders to facilitate the acquisition to enable them become the hub in the production of HIV and AIDS retroviral drugs on the continent.
He said the company which currently employed 208 Ghanaians could employ about 500 personnel if they won more contracts within and outside Ghana.
Dr Adu Gyamfi appealed for the reduction of tax on their raw materials to reduce high cost of production that could be passed on to patients.
Mr Sidibe, who toured the various departments of the company, expressed satisfaction at their production levels adding “you have demonstrated that you are not only a business organisation, but also a social transformational organisation”.
He said 80 per cent of most of the anti-retroviral drugs were imported from India and therefore, heart-warming that DANADAMS was producing such drugs in large quantities for Ghana and her neighbours.
Mr Sidibe appealed to member countries of the African Union and Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to devise ways of supporting budding industries to curb the perennial importation from advanced countries.