Local Production of Essential Medicines, Including Antiretrovirals: Issues, Challenges and Perspectives in the African Region. WHO Regional Committee for Africa, Fifty-fifth Session. Maputo, Mozambique, 22–26 August 2005
(2005; 11 pages) [French]


1. World medicine production is on the increase but is concentrated in a few industrialized countries. Despite the growth observed in global medicine production over the years, studies indicate that Africa’s share of world medicine production continues to decline.

2. With a view to strengthening regional local production capacity and improving access to essential medicines, the Regional Committee for Africa formerly adopted resolutions AFR/RC38/R19, AFR/RC49/R5 and AFR/RC54/R5. These pertain to local production of essential drugs in the Region; a situation and trend analysis of essential drugs in the Region; and improving access to care and treatment for HIV/AIDS, The 3 by 5 Initiative.

3. Most production of medicines in the Region is limited to compounding and packaging, repacking, and processing bulk medicines into dosage forms using imported raw materials. The majority of the production facilities are privately-owned. Mainly generic medicines are produced, and they satisfy only a small proportion of national requirements. The viability of local production is influenced primarily by the size of the market; existence of other production capacity in the Region; size and procurement preferences, especially of public sector market, physical infrastructure and human resources.

4. This document examines issues, challenges and perspectives and advises governments on the way forward with local production of essential medicines, including antiretrovirals, in the African Region.

5. The Regional Committee is requested to review and adopt the orientations contained in this document.

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