Cipla in South Africa to stop imports from India

November 6th, 2008 - 3:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Johannesburg, Nov 6 (IANS) Cipla Medpro Manufacturing (CMM), a wholly-owned subsidiary of South African generic drug manufacturer Cipla Medpro, will stop importing anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs) from India and start its own production from next year.The company also plans to produce drugs for export to Cipla in India, as well as several other drug companies here, in an effort to recoup costs of setting up a 195 million rand ($19.8 million or Rs.948 million) plant here.

CMM general manager Mark Gardiner told the daily Business Report that although the active ingredients for the ARV’s would still be imported from Cipla in India, his company would still save money by producing the drugs in South Africa.

Reacting to CMM’s plans, Mark Ansley, an analyst at Cadiz African Harvest Asset Management, said the company should not antagonise Cipla in India in its pursuit of new products.

According to Gardiner, the plant here is currently running at between 15 and 20 percent of its capacity, but needed to run at 50 percent capacity to achieve profitability.

Gardiner said he aimed to achieve this profitability by next year. “We are still finalising our budget, which we expect to complete in six weeks. After that we will have an idea of what profit margins we are looking at,” he was quoted as saying.

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