At the time of independence in 1947, there were no pharmaceutical firms in Pakistan. Today, the country boasts more than 700 pharmaceutical manufacturing units. In fact, Quintile IMS in its latest quarterly report puts the ‘Active Manufacturers’ at 759, up from a total of 304 in 1999. Taking the Quintile IMS figure as a reference point, only 27 are Multi-National Corporations (MNCs) while Pakistani firms account for 645 of the total. The generally accepted figure of MNCs, though, is 17 or 184, down from 40 or more in the 1990s. Pharmaceutical companies are geographically spread all over Pakistan. Pharmaceutical production units in provinces tend to concentrate in major cities like Karachi, Lahore and Peshawar. Although the numbers reflect that majority of firms are in the province of Punjab, but in terms of production, capacity utilization, volume and size of business, Karachi leads the way as far as pharmaceutical firms are concerned
Pakistan’s pharmaceutical industry has the potential to propel the country to a much needed economic prosperity estimated at $5 billion plus in a span of five years. Presently, however, Pakistan has a negligible presence in the global pharmaceutical industry of almost $1 trillion that is expected to grow to $1.1 trillion by 2014. Pakistan’s pharmaceutical industry stands at a little over $2.1 billion with exports of roughly $190 million. The cumulative annual growth rate of pharmaceutical industry has been 12% during the last three years and local companies launched 2,956 products from 2008 to 2012 as compared to just 193 products by multinational companies.
Capital and quality human resources are likely to remain concentrated in the top 100 firms, specifically top 50. Yet the increase in annual profits is to come from volume production rather than any new innovation or research into NCE. This volume production will be closely related to increase in per capita income, general awareness, increase in literacy, investment in health and its related infrastructure, growth in population and expansion of health facilities.
The first Investment Policy by Board of Investment (BOI) was given in 1997 which opened services, social, infrastructure and agriculture sectors for foreign and local investors. It was a major step forward for integration of Pakistan’s economy into international markets as prior to this policy; foreign investment was restricted to manufacturing sector only. The 1997 Policy laid a solid foundation for the gains in FDI inflows experienced over the subsequent decade.
Foreign Direct Investment in Pakistan increased by 2761.10 USD Million in 2016. Foreign Direct Investment in Pakistan averaged 2651.26 USD Million from 2010 until 2016, reaching an all time high of 3184.30 USD Million in 2010 and a record low of 2099.10 USD Million in 2012.
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