Egypt’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly has outlined the importance of developing the local drug industry amid the ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.
Madbouly’s comments came during a meeting with Minister of Health Hala Zayed and Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research Khaled Abdel Ghaffar.
Also present at the meeting were Adviser to the President on Prevention and Health Dr Mohamed Awad Tag El-Din, Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA) Chairperson Tamer Essam, and Chairperson of the Egyptian Authority for Unified Procurement and Medical Supplies Bahaa Zidan.
On Monday, the Ministry of Health reported 420 new coronavirus cases, and 46 new deaths. The country’s total number of confirmed cases reached 92,482 cases, with 4,652 fatalities. A total of 34,838 cases have recovered and been discharged from quarantine facilities at hospitals.
During the meeting on Monday, the Prime Minister said, “The coronavirus crisis has taught us much, and we are still learning from it, as it represents a major challenge for all countries worldwide.”
He added that such health crises emphasises the need to accelerate the development of Egypt’s pharmaceutical industry. The move is particularly worthwhile as the country has already taken steps on this before the current global health crisis took hold.
The Prime Minister also highlighted the potential of Egypt’s pharmaceutical industry to export its products across Africa.
Madbouly urged for the concerned bodies to follow-up on the latest updates regarding international efforts in developing a vaccine against the coronavirus. This would include provision for Egypt to gain a sufficient share of these vaccines.
Zayed said that Egypt’s pharmaceuticals industry is developing and has played an important role in supporting the state in the face of many challenges, including stamping out the Hepatitis C infection.
Abdel Ghaffar pointed out that Egypt ranks as foremost among Arab and African nations in the pharmaceuticals industry. He added that the state is working on reaching self-sufficiency in terms of affordable drugs.