GCC pharma sectors to spend billions of dollar to tackle COVID-19

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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Medical Lab
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Pharmaceutical research companies and manufacturers in the Gulf region are making every possible effort to meet the challenges of COVID-19, and are now investing billions of US dollars in the manufacture of vaccines and medicines.

At a recently held General Assembly in the UAE, members of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association in the Gulf (PHRMAG) have committed to refocusing their efforts to end the pandemic.

At the conference, the organization stated that there are now more than 500 research initiatives committed to the development of a new generation of medicinal drugs and vaccines providing successful treatment, prevention, or cure for the disease.

PHRMAG stated, “Collectively, PHRMAG-member companies are investing billions of dollars in the global effort to develop cutting-edge new medicines and vaccines”.

By next year, many countries around the globe are aiming to develop COVID-19 treatments and vaccines.

Researchers in the UAE is currently conducting Phase 3 clinical trials of their own vaccine, recently approved for emergency use by frontline health staff. The nation had said earlier that by the end of the year or early 2021, a safe and effective vaccine could reach the market.

Scientific perspective

PHRMAG Chairman Mohamed Ezz Eldin of Novartis said at the general assembly that he was optimistic about the outcome of the ongoing efforts to end the pandemic.

Mr. Ezz Eldin said, “I’m optimistic about the scientific outlook for breakthrough medicines and vaccines – there is an unprecedented global effort underway”.

He also underscored the cooperation over the past six months with governments in the Gulf to tackle the virus.

“PHRMAG and its member companies have always collaborated closely with governments to advance human health in the region,” added Mr. Ezz Eldin.

He further stated, “What’s so encouraging is how we’ve built on that this year to ensure that we’ve been able to ensure the uninterrupted supply of high quality essential and innovative medicines to patients in the region”.


PHRMAG is a Dubai-based association that represents the 24 international biopharmaceutical firms researching, developing, producing and marketing medications and vaccines.