Local pharmaceutical companies realised exports worth $102m in the first half (H1) of the current year, down from $121m during the same period in 2016, a decline of 18.4%.
The report by the Export Council of Medical Industries showed that the pharmaceutical sector accounts for nearly 48% of the total medical industry’s exports.
The report pointed out that the Egyptian International Pharmaceuticals Industries Company (EIPICO) ranked first in the list of companies with the highest export value, marking $25.1m in six months.
Pharco Corporation came in second spot with exports of $13.9m, while Medical Union Pharmaceuticals ranked third with $7.2m worth of exports.
Eva Pharma Pharmaceutical Company was the fourth largest exporter with exports worth $6.1m, followed by Pharma Swede in fifth place with $3.4m.
Alkan Medical’s exports amounted to $1m, followed by the European Egyptian Pharmaceutical Industry ranked seventh with $2.8m.
The Chemical Industries Development (CID), a subsidiary of Holdipharma, came in eighth place with exports of $2.6m, outperforming El Qahera For Pharmaceutical & Chemical Industries in ninth place with $2.28m worth of exports, followed by Pharo Pharma with $2.26m.
Pharmaceutical companies operating in the Egyptian market achieved sales of EGP 23.1bn over the first six months of the current year, up by 26.8% from the same period last year.
Despite EIPICO following Pharco in selling pharmaceuticals in the local market, the former kept its first place in exports.
EIPICO accounts for a quarter of local pharmaceuticals sales, relying on having its products registered in many countries in the world, especially the markets neighbouring Egypt.
Board member of Pharmed Healthcare Alaa Borhan said that the exports declined due to the low prices.
He explained that the companies that importing Egyptian medicines require contracting at the same prices the drugs are sold for in Egypt, which takes into account social dimension, and this impacts the revenues from exports.
He called for the Ministry of Health to set special prices for export-oriented products. “Each drug must have two files in the Ministry of Health,” he stressed. “One should be for the local market with special prices for Egyptians, while the other considers exporting prices to help companies make profit margins.”
He pointed out that the local pharmaceutical companies were dependent on exporting their products to the countries of Libya, Syria, Iraq, and Yemen, and that the political crises in those countries reflected negatively on Egyptian brands.