Mumbai : Indian pharmaceutical industry must treat January 1, 2018 deadline issued by the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) as sacrosanct for upgrading skills sets of persons employed in their units, according to Life Sciences Sector Skill Development Council (LSSSDC) set up under auspices of Ministry of Skill Development.
In August 2016, Drug Controller General of India had issued a circular stipulating the deadline at January 1, 2018.
“India workforce stands at 3.7% in terms of the National Occupation Standards laid down while it is 97% in South Korea and 50% in China. The developed countries also have a very high rate as the low rate out- weighs the other factors in the economy we cannot compromise on the same,” said Ranjit Madan, chief executive officer of Life Sciences Sector Skill Development Council, while speaking at the launch of skill development project in the state of Maharashtra.
“Keeping in view the objective of bringing substantial improvement in the quality of pharmaceutical products, it has become imperative that all personnel employed in pharmaceutical manufacturing units shall undergo the certification programs developed by LSSSDC and with effect from January 1, 2018, no person shall be employed in any pharmaceutical/bio-pharmaceutical manufacturing units unless he has obtained a formal degree in the relevant area, or has been certified by LSSSDC or equivalent organization in the area in which he has been deployed,” the DCGI circular then said.
The industry ready, employable resource will not only bring down the training cost for companies by providing job ready pharmacy graduates but also lower unproductive lead time during initial employment period. This will help companies to hire right person matching the right job profile that will lead to significant reduction in attrition rate, said Hemant Deshpande, managing partner, Pollux Life Science Solutions LLP in his initial remarks.
Speaking at the panel discussion, Dr. Bangarurajan, Deputy Drug Controller, West Zone said, “India exports $17 billion worth of pharmaceutical drugs and one out two medicines consumed globally is by an Indian. The country also produces 50,000 pharma graduates every year of which 7,000 are from Maharashtra. However, in 2016, 136 warning letter on export alert were issued around the globe and India accounted for 27% of the same, which threatens to cut the revenue growth and needs to be addressed through training programs.”
“Indian pharma professionals account for salaries worth Rs 33,000 crore annually and this is largely dependent upon export revenues. Any element of negligence at various level of workforce can threaten regulatory reactions hampering the image of the company in particular and the country in general,” Deshpande said.
The launch was attended by industry leaders from across the pharma spectrum including Vivek Padagaonkar and Rajiv Shukla from Organisation of Pharmaceutical Producers of India (OPPI) and Dr George Patani representing Indian Drug Manufacturers Association (IDMA).
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