LIFEPharma, a fully integrated pharmaceutical manufacturer, and a wholly-owned subsidiary of the UAE-headquartered VPS Healthcare, has announced an “historic’ agreement with Apotex, the largest producer of generic drugs in Canada.
In a first-of-its-kind agreement, LIFEPharma will manufacture nine products in its state-of-the-art facility in Dubai -- which will then be exported for commercialisation in Canada – becoming the first UAE company to export generics to the North American market.
Under the 10-year contract, LIFEPharma will be producing as many as 120 million tablets per year. The products include medications used to treat a certain type of nerve disease, commonly called Lou Gehrig's disease. Other products include medications used to treat symptoms of Parkinson's disease, an antiviral drug used in the treatment of hepatitis B virus infection, a medicine used to treat partial seizures and a synthetic antibiotic used for the treatment of infections caused by multi-resistant bacteria.
None of these therapeutics have ever been manufactured in the UAE or the GCC for export – or at these volumes – to the North American markets, demonstrating LIFEPharma’s ability to deliver complex products that meet the standards of quality in one of the most rigorous regulatory pharmaceutical markets in the world, the company said.
“The partnership is an important milestone not only for LIFEPharma and VPS Healthcare, but also for the UAE,” said Dr Shamsheer Vayalil, chairman and managing director of VPS Healthcare. “This project represents an important milestone in the strategy to make the UAE a global hub for knowledge-based, sustainable and innovative industries, “ he added.
The pharmaceutical manufacturing industry is an innovation-led, value-based growth engine for the UAE’s economy. It combines the prowess of advanced technologies with the expertise of highly-skilled professionals, allowing the UAE to successfully compete in the global marketplace and move beyond its current trade and logistics standing.
“The GCC region continues to be a significant growth opportunity and focus for Apotex. The partnership with LIFEPharma represents an important step in achieving our growth objectives,” said Jeff Watson, president and CEO, Apotex.
Apotex and LifePharma are also considering manufacturing additional products for export to the Middle East that will leverage LIFEPharma’s access in the UAE and GCC markets to introduce new and niche products.
The UAE’s only USFDA-certified facility, LIFEPharma also holds the honour of being the first UAE pharmaceutical production company approved to supply medications to US, UK, Australia, Portugal and Taiwan – six countries with some of the toughest regulatory requirements.
LIFEPharma started operations in Dubai’s Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) in 2014. The manufacturing facility has a capacity of 1 billion tablets, 300 million capsules and 30 million liquids. – TradeArabia News Service