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DoP receives 278 applications under PLI scheme for pharmaceuticals till August end

Gireesh Babu, New Delhi
Tuesday, October 12, 2021, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

The Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP) has received 41 more applications for the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme for pharmaceuticals in the month of August, taking the total number of applications received till the closing date to 278.

The Department, in its monthly report for the month of August, 2021, said that it has received a total of 278 applications from the industry under the scheme, till the closing date of August 31. The applications are under evaluation.

The scheme was notified on March 3, 2021 with an objective to enhance India’s manufacturing capabilities by increasing investment and production in the sector and contributing to product diversification to high value goods in the pharmaceutical sector. One of the further objectives of the scheme was to create global champions out of India who have the potential to grow in size and scale using cutting edge technology and thereby penetrate the global value chains. The last date of filing applications was initially set at July 31, which was later extended till August 31.

Till the end of July, it has received 237 applications, according to the DoP records.

Similarly, the Department has received 24 applications in the second round of PLI scheme for bulk drugs in August, while the total number of applications approved till the end of the month was 42 from the 1st round. The total number of applications received for this scheme is 215.

It may be noted that the DoP’s report comes at a time when there are criticisms from various segments of the industry that the scheme is stuck at approvals with the applications from the first round are still pending for approval. There were also reports that the scheme is expected to create monopoly in terms of manufacturing certain bulk drugs. Manufacturing of fermentation-based products needs more support than what has been offered in the PLI scheme, as the country has to face severe competition from China in terms of cheaper products getting imported in huge quantities to India, said industry sources earlier.

During the month of July, the DoP has received only three applications in the bulk drug category. The PLI scheme was notified in July, 2020, and it has announced approval to individual companies from January to April, 2021. In July, the timeline for submission of applications under the PLI scheme for promotion of domestic manufacturing of critical key starting materials (KSMs), drug intermediaries and active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and PLI scheme for promoting domestic manufacturing of medical devices were extended till August 31, 2021.

For the PLI for medical devices, the Department has received 13 applications for the second round by August 31, while the total applications it has received for the scheme was 28 overall, it said. Till the end of August, the DoP has approved 13 applications from the first round.

The Department has also set up a Standing Forum of Industry Associations of Medical Device Industry, in August to provide collated industry inputs to the department on policy issues faced by the industry. The decision was taken in the third meeting of the National Medical Devices Promotion Council on August 24, under the co-chairmanship of secretary, DoP and Secretary, DPIIT.

During the month, the DoP has received two more Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) proposals, adding to the 16 pending at the beginning of the month. During the month, it has disposed of one proposal and 17 are pending at the end of the month.

The Department also released the second installment of Rs. 1.15 crore to Kala Amb Infrastructure Development Company, as part of its scheme for assistance to pharma clusters.

The amendment in the Drug (Prices Control) Order, 2013, for making revision in ceiling prices after every five years and de-linking the same with publication of NLEM, is expected to bring predictability in price revision activities, said the Department. The National Pharmaceutical Pricing Authority (NPPA) has fixed the retail prices of 25 new medicines during August, bringing the cumulative figure to 1,598 till the month. The total overcharged amount received during August is Rs. 23.65 lakh.

During the month of August, 122 Jan Aushadhi Kendras under the Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janaushadhi Pariyojana (PMBJP) were opened, taking the cumulative numbers to 8,122.

Rs. 46 crore has been released to National Institutes of Pharmaceutical Education and Research (NIPERs) during the month, during when online counselling was held for admission for academic session 2021 in seven NIPERs. A total of 57 research papers have been published in August, 2021.

 

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