Dr. Muhammad Ali Pate

FG set to sign executive order to control rising drug prices

....to build pharmaceutical-grade warehouses in 21 states


In a bid to control escalating drug prices across the country, the Federal Government has announced that it will soon issue an executive order.

Also, in a strategic move to fortify the pharmaceutical infrastructure, the federal government has initiated the construction of pharmaceutical-grade warehouses in 21 states in collaboration with drug management agencies.

Prof. Muhammad Pate, the Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, made this announcement on Wednesday in Abuja at the third ministerial press briefing series organized by the Ministry of Information and Natural Orientation.

Pate explained that the executive order is a short-term goal for reducing drug prices.

He added that the Federal Government’s mid- to long-term goals in reducing drug prices involve the domestication of imported drugs within the next three years, in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Investment.

The minister noted that pharmaceutical-grade warehouses at the federal level will be commissioned in April 2024.

Pate said: “The rising cost of pharmaceuticals is a pressing concern, and we are taking decisive action to address this issue. An executive order will soon be issued to curb escalating drug prices in the short term, while our mid- to long-term goal involves the domestication of imported drugs within the next three years, in collaboration with the Ministry of Trade.

“In a strategic move to fortify the pharmaceutical infrastructure across the nation, the Federal Government initiated the construction of pharmaceutical-grade warehouses in 21 states in collaboration with drug management agencies.

“Two additional warehouses at the federal level are also underway, complemented by the installation of the Warehousing Management Information System (M Supply, in these 21 pharma-grade warehouses.

“This visionary project, which commenced in October 2023, is slated for completion in March 2024, with a scheduled commissioning in April 2024.”

According to the minister, the implementation of the Warehousing Management Information System (WMIS) is expected to significantly enhance accountability and transparency, ensuring the potency of public health medicines and other health commodities.

He added that the government’s efforts to promote medical industrialization are gaining momentum.

“This infrastructure development aligns with our commitment to improving health outcomes for citizens nationwide.

’Furthermore, the government has taken strides in advancing healthcare data management. Essential medicines and narcotics utilisation across the three levels of healthcare have been successfully onboarded onto the National Health Logistics Management Information System platform.

“This decisive step not only strengthens our international image by enhancing medicine reporting but also establishes a robust framework for monitoring and optimising the supply chain.

“In addition, the Federal Government has led the development of the maiden National Policy on Cosmetics Safety in Nigeria, a crucial policy that will guide the production and safe use of cosmetics in the country.

“Moreover, the development of two Unified Food Safety Training Manuals, focusing on Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point principles, as well as the requirements for good hygiene and manufacturing practices along the food supply chain, underscores our commitment to promoting food safety and hygiene practices across the nation.

“Through strategic partnerships and funding initiatives, we are unlocking the full potential of our healthcare sector.

“I am pleased to announce that the Ministry has secured a $1 billion pledge from Afriexim Bank, alongside commitments from foreign partners, to support our endeavours in this regard,” he said.

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