(Daily News Scan - DNS English) What is A Bulk Drug Park?

(Daily News Scan - DNS English) What is A Bulk Drug Park?

Himachal Pradesh is vying for allotment of bulk Drug Park. The state is vying for the allotment under a central government scheme announced earlier this year for setting up three such parks across the country. The state government has identified around 1,400 acres in Una district and sent a proposal to the Centre seeking grant to set up a bulk drug park there.

In this DNS,In this DNS we will let you know about Bulk Drug Park and why is Himachal Pradesh keen to build one?

A bulk drug is a key ingredient of any drug or medicine. It is also called as an active pharmaceutical ingredient (API). A bulk drug lends a drug or medicine the desired therapeutic effect or produces the intended pharmacological activity.

For example- paracetamol is a bulk drug, which acts against pain. It is mixed with binding agents or solvents to prepare the finished pharmaceutical product, i.e. a paracetamol tablet, capsule or syrup, which is consumed by the patient.

How API prepared?

These are prepared from multiple reactions involving chemicals and solvents. The basic raw material which undergoes reactions to form an API is called the key starting material, or KSM. Chemical compounds formed during the intermediate stages during these reactions are called drug intermediates or DIs.

Why is India promoting bulk drug park?

  • India has one of the largest pharmaceutical industries in the world (third largest by volume)
  • But the industry is largely dependent on countries like China, for importing APIs, DIs and KSMs. In the current year, drug manufacturers in India suffered repeated setbacks due to disruption in imports.
  • Back in January, factories in China shut due to the lockdown imposed in the country. Later, international supply chains were also affected as the Covid pandemic gripped the entire world.
  • Further, the border conflict between India and China exacerbated the situation.
  • All these factors forced the Indian government to call for greater self-reliance across all industries. In June, the department of pharmaceuticals announced a scheme for the promotion of three bulk drug parks in the country.

What does the scheme offer?

  • Bulk drug parks are expected to bring down manufacturing costs of bulk drugs in the country.
  • These are also expected to increase competitiveness in the domestic bulk drug industry.
  • The Centre’s scheme will support three selected parks in the country by providing a one-time grant-in-aid for the creation of common infrastructure facilities.
  • This grant-in-aid will be 70 per cent of the cost of the common facilities but in the case of Himachal Pradesh and other hill states, it will be 90 per cent. The Centre will provide a maximum of Rs 1,000 crore per park.
  • Several states like Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Haryana, Punjab, Tamil Nadu and Telangana have expressed interest in the scheme. A project management agency, nominated by the department of pharmaceuticals, will examine the proposals and make recommendations to a scheme steering committee, which will be further approving the proposals.
  • In case of Himachal, the state is keen to attract investment to strengthen its economy and generate employment. It organised a global investors’ meet last year, and has introduced reforms like a single window clearance and online approval system for industrial units. The state has also jumped nine places in this year’s ease-of-doing-business rankings declared by the Centre last month, securing the seventh position in the country.
  • According to the state government, Himachal already has Asia’s largest pharma manufacturing hub, that is the Baddi-Barotiwala-Nalagarh industrial belt, and the state produces around half of India’s total drug formulations.