PAKISTAN SEEKS TO BOOST DRUG EXPORTS TO CAMBODIA

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Pakistan's government is planning to organise an exhibition of pharmaceutical products in Cambodia next year as part of plans to expand drug exports in the country. The Pakistan Chambers Of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) has called for Pakistani drugmakers to participate in the project.

Despite Pakistan's large population, the country's share of the global drugs trade is low at only around 0.31%. The local drug manufacturing industry is small and only produces basic medicines. As a result, Pakistan exports very few medicines. However, the government is attempting to address this trend by offering incentives to drug exporters as well as by supporting the upgrading of production standards.

In 2004, a group of local drugmakers put forward the PharmaVision 2010 plan, which aimed to increase drug exports to US$10bn by 2010. Meanwhile, the authorities are reported to be planning to build a US$17mn manufacturing facility.

The adoption of WTO-backed trade initiatives should also help Pakistan's export sector improve. As well as Southeast Asia, exporters are targeting high-growth, former Soviet economies, and delegations have visited Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan in recent months.