Dubai Science Park (DSP) has recently welcomed the inauguration of its first pharmaceutical manufacturing plant, operated by Pharmax Pharmaceuticals (Pharmax), a pharmaceutical company that will produce a wide range of medications from the science-focused business community.
The opening ceremony drew the participation of His Excellency Dr Amin Hussain Al Amiri, Assistant Undersecretary of Public Health Policy & Licensing at the Ministry of Health and Prevention, Dr Younis Kazim, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Healthcare Corporation, Malek Al Malek, Group CEO of TECOM Group, Ahmad Tabari, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Pharmax, Lamia Berrada, Chairman of the Managing Board at Bottu Pharmaceuticals & Ayman Cheikh-Lahlou, Chief Executive Officer at Cooper Pharma.
As the first advanced facility at the science-focused business community, the AED125 million (US$34 million) plant with an annual production capacity of over 200 million tablet and capsule dosage forms is dedicated to the manufacturing and commercialisation of pharmaceuticals that target chronic conditions prevalent in the Middle East. The factory is equipped with the latest European technology, meeting stringent global regulatory standards.
Marwan Abdulaziz Janahi, Managing Director of Dubai Science Park and Chairing Member of the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Equipment Taskforce of the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030, said: “Our region currently impor ts more than 80 per cent of pharmaceuticals from abroad. At the same time, technological advancements, an increase in R&D capacities and talent availability, state-of-the-art infrastructure, proximity to emerging markets, and a favourable policy framework present us with a unique opportunity to enhance our domestic manufacturing capabilities.”
He added: “We have worked closely with The Executive Council of Dubai and colleagues on the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Equipment Taskforce to achieve tangible results that support Dubai’s economic ambitions. The inauguration of the Pharmax manufacturing plant marks the first significant milestone in our efforts. We are delighted to welcome our business partner to our vibrant community of more than 350 companies and 3,600 industry professionals.”
Established in 2016, the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030 has identified the pharmaceuticals and medical equipment sector as one of six strategically important sectors for Dubai’s economy. Positive forecasts predict that an increase in industrial capabilities will add AED160 billion (US$43.5 billion) to Dubai’s GDP, with the industrial sector growing by AED18 billion (US$4.9 billion). Furthermore, the plan is expected to significantly enhance the UAE’s R&D capacities while adding 27,000 specialised jobs and AED15.8 billion (US$4.3 billion) to the country’s export sheet.
Madhukar Tanna, Chief Executive Officer of Pharmax, said: “We are now able to locally produce medication for cardiovascular diseases, psychiatric and neurological disorders, gastroenterological diseases, metabolic disorders such as hyperlipidaemia and diabetes, central nervous system diseases, bacterial and viral infectious diseases, respiratory illnesses, asthma and allergies, bone and joint inflammation disorders, and urological diseases. This will significantly reduce the dependence on imports of related products from abroad.”
Construction of the facility began in September 2015 as a joint venture between Al Ittihad Drug Store, a distributor of medicines in the UAE, and two of the largest pharmaceutical manufacturing companies in Morocco – Cooper Pharma and Bottu Pharmaceuticals.