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Pharma export declines 2.62% at $1.99 billion while imports decline 6.61% during January

Gireesh Babu, New Delhi
Monday, February 20, 2023, 08:00 Hrs  [IST]

Exports of pharmaceutical products from the country continued to register a decline in the month of January, 2023, following the trend of exports in December last year, even though the ten month cumulative export performance has shown a growth of three per cent.

According to data from the ministry of commerce and industry, the Indian drugs and pharmaceutical exports have reported a decline of 2.62 per cent in the first month of the calendar year 2023, at $1.99 billion as compared to $2.04 billion reported during the same month of previous year.

The total exports during the ten months from April, 2022 to January, 2023 stood at $20.84 billion, as against the $20.24 billion reported in the same period of previous fiscal year with an increase of 2.97 per cent.

Pharma exports have reported a decline of 1.9 per cent in the month of December, at $2.26 billion as compared to $2.30 billion reported during the same month of 2021, shows the Ministry data. For the nine months ended December, 2022, exports was reported at $18.85 billion, with a growth of 3.57 per cent as compared to $18.20 billion registered during the corresponding period of previous year.

It may be noted that the government has fixed a target of $27.4 billion of pharmaceuticals exports for the fiscal year 2022-23 even though the global market has various challenges which has an impact on the exports. The government is targeting a 11 per cent growth during the fiscal year 2022-23, from a commendable growth in the exports at $24.4 billion achieved during the fiscal year 2021-22.

Imports of medicinal and pharmaceutical products has reported a 6.61 per cent decline during the month, at $653.76 million as compared to $700 million in January, 2021. The cumulative imports for the ten months ended January, 2023, stood at $6.78 billion as compared to $7.66 billion, registering a 11.48 per cent decline during the ten months of the current fiscal year.

Imports during December 2022 have reported a growth of 1.61 per cent, deviating from the trend of declining imports in the previous months, to $754.67 million compared to the $742.69 million imports registered in December, 2021.

The Economic Survey 2022-23, released ahead of the Union Budget 2023, has said that the pharma exports have performed well to report growth in the recent past despite the global trade disruptions and drop in demand for Covid-19-related treatments.

The pharma exports grew despite Covid-19 impacted disruptions in supply chain increasing significantly from $15.4 billion in FY15 to $24.6 billion in FY22 and stood at $18.8 billion during April to December 2022, registering a positive growth of 3.6 per cent over April- December 2021, said the Economic Survey.

"Indian pharmaceutical exports achieved a healthy growth of 24 per cent in FY21, driven by Covid-19-induced demand for critical drugs and other supplies made to over 150 countries. The performance of pharma exports in FY22 has been robust, sustaining growth despite the global trade disruptions and drop in demand for Covid-19-related treatments. Carrying forward this growth momentum, drug and pharmaceutical exports during April-October 2022 was 22 per cent higher than the corresponding pre-pandemic period of FY20," said the Economic Survey.

The high growth in export in the recent past was on account of the stocking of inventories of medicines by countries all over the world, and increased demand for vaccines and medicines related to the Covid-19 pandemic which India was in a position to provide, it added.


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