Number of pharmaceutical factories in UAE to double by 2021

The UAE is expecting to see 34 pharmaceutical factories operating in the country by 2021, double the current number, which stands at 17

At present, Jafza is host to 54 international pharmaceutical companies.
At present, Jafza is host to 54 international pharmaceutical companies.

The UAE is expecting to see 34 pharmaceutical factories operating in the country by 2021, double the current number, which stands at 17.

The anticipated increase is reportedly in line with the national government’s goal of transforming the UAE into a global hub for international pharmaceutical companies.

To help bring about this transformation, the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza).

The two parties have expressed commitment to working together in developing the country’s pharmaceutical sector by collaborating on issues concerning licencing of pharmaceutical factories. They will also review the processes involved in obtaining approvals and permits from the ministry to enable Jafza to implement measures that will make the free zone more attractive to foreign investors. 

The partnership is said to be part of the free zone’s efforts to boost the healthcare sector by providing the infrastructure and environment necessary to allow companies to flourish and develop ‘Made in Dubai’ pharmaceutical products.

Quoting Dr Amin Hussein Al Amiri, assistant under-secretary of public health and licencing policy at the Ministry of Health and Protection, UAE state news agency, WAM, said that the MoU builds on cooperation between federal and local government institutions to promote a legislative and investment environment in keeping with international best practice.

At present, 54 international pharmaceutical companies are operating in the free zone, a number that is expected to increase to more than 75 by 2021, with investments of up to $544.5m (AED2bn) annually.

Al Amiri also noted that the ministry is interested in partnering with international firms to establish research centres for the manufacture of generic drugs, in cooperation with local factories.

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