Medical manufacturers plan to move abroad as export bans exhaust businesstext_fields
The Union government's restrictions on essential supplies that has been in place since the pandemic broke out in the country, is prompting manufacturers in the field to start anew or relocate manufacturing facilities abroad, The Indian Express reported.
Hindustan Syringes and Medical Services (HMD), the largest syringe manufacture in India and owner of brands of DispoVan and Kojak, said that the sudden changes in the state's policy had impacted their commitments to customers and have revealed plans to completely shift overseas in 4 to 5 years. The company exports products to over a hundred countries.
In late October, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade had imposed export restrictions on three categories of syringes, meaning companies had to obtain a license to ship the item abroad. Managing Director of HMD and coordinator of the Association of Indian Medical Device Industry, Rajiv Nath, told TIE that imposing restrictions on Covid-19 vaccine syringes seemed reasonable but not on insulin syringes. Eight to 10 million insulin syringes lie with them as pending orders from foreign countries. Such disruptions give India a bad name as a medical product supplier. Many countries have requested them to start manufacturing units there, and companies are thinking on similar lines, Nath said.
As of now, the syringe makers were allowed to increase the export quota after multiple petitions and they expect to clear stocks by December end.
Director of Narang Medical, Praveen Narang, said that the pandemic had caused the price rise on certain essential products around ten times and they procured these for inflated rates. But after the abrupt ban on exports came and left, the prices fell, and they faced huge losses, he said. The company had an affiliate in Florida since 2015, through which it met supply demands during the export ban came on in India. Narang has plans to become a United States citizen and move his manufacturing facility, currently in Ghaziabad of Uttar Pradesh, to Mexico or Columba in five to six years.
However, a government source told TIE that it was not only India that banned the export of essentials. The Department of Commerce has been time-bound and product-specific and kept the country's need a priority, the source said.