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Jakarta (Indonesia Window) – Indonesia’s pharmaceutical industry grew 10.81 percent during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021.

In 2021, the total value produced by the national pharmaceutical industry was recorded at 90-95 trillion rupiahs (some 6.2 – 6.6 billion U.S. dollars), Chairman of the Indonesian Pharmaceutical Company Association F. Tirto Kusnadi said at a national conference in Nusa Dua, Bali, on Thursday (March 24).

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According to Tirto, the growth of the pharmaceutical industry in 2021 took place because the industry players knew what to do when dealing with COVID-19, compared to the previous year when the pandemic first hit.

“In 2020 we did not know what to do in coping with the pandemic. In 2021, being healthy is the main need of people,” he said.

However, he added, the Indonesian pharmaceutical industry still faces challenges related to raw materials for medicines that still have to be imported.

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Meanwhile, the Director General of Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices at the Ministry of Health, Lucia Rizka Andalusia, explained that in Indonesia there are more than 200 companies engaged in the pharmaceutical industry for the manufacture of drugs or formulations, but 90 percent of the raw materials used are still imported.

“During the pandemic, we experienced a shortage of drugs because of the embargo (raw materials) for drugs. Transportation was also not possible,” he said.

Therefore, according to him, in order to realize pharmaceutical resilience, Indonesia must develop the drug raw material industry, at least to meet the 10 most widely used molecules in the country.

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Reporting by Indonesia Window

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