German life science multinational Bayer will set up an over the counter (OTC) production hub in Egypt in partnership with one of the local pharmaceutical companies, a top company official said.

Mohamed Galal, Vice President, & Head of Consumer Health Division – Middle East for Bayer told Zawya Projects that Egypt has established itself as one of the fastest-growing pharmaceutical markets in the Middle East.

“Our three-year strategy is to expand our business within the Egyptian market by producing 60-70 percent of OTC medicines for consumers locally by the end of 2025,” he said, adding that Bayer is planning to invest 240 million Egyptian pounds ($12 million) in local manufacturing and will re-launch five new consumer health-related products by the end of 2025.

Ahmed Farrag, Commercial Lead Egypt & Levant at Consumer Health Division, said the establishment of a local production hub in Egypt reflects the strategic importance of the Egyptian market to Bayer.

“This will bring us one step closer to our consumers and enable us to ensure the availability of our renowned and iconic brands to Egyptian consumers, while also responding to logistical challenges following the pandemic,” he said.

Tamer Mohamed Essam, Chairman of the Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA), said Authority’s policy of drug localisation aims to reduce the possibility of drug shortages in the local market, in addition to encouraging investments in Egypt.

He added that the EDA has reformed its policies to promote localisation efforts by providing flexible regulations for licensing drugs, fast-track clearance of new products and offer manufacturers all available technical assistance to facilitate the registration and launch of all the medicines that are intended to be made locally. 

(1 US Dollar = 19.75 Egyptian Pounds)

(Reporting by Eman Hamed; Editing by Anoop Menon)