The Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed a loan agreement worth US$8 million with Imexpharm Corporation in the southern province of Dong Thap to help the company sustain its production of generic medicines despite global supply disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, ADB announced on Tuesday.
The financing will meet the company’s working capital needs to ensure ample supply of active pharmaceutical ingredients for essential generic medicine production.
Imexpharm’s operations and continued production of generic pharmaceuticals and their ensured availability in the market is integral in safeguarding the country’s healthcare during the pandemic, ADB said in its statement.
“Asia has witnessed disruptions across the pharmaceutical supply chain in 2020, including a shortage of active pharmaceutical ingredients,” ADB quoted Head of Health and Education Investments at its Private Sector Operations Department Aniruddha Patil as saying.
“This project demonstrates ADB’s continued efforts to enhance health outcomes in Vietnam by encouraging the development and use of local generic medicines.”
“We are pleased to be working with ADB,” ADB quoted Imexpharm’s chairman Nguyen Quoc Dinh as saying.
“The financing will improve our liquidity situation and ensure a consistent supply of affordable generic drugs to hospitals and pharmacies across Vietnam.”
The debt financing is part of ADB’s $20 billion assistance announced on April 13 to help its developing members manage the pandemic.
Imexpharm was established in 1977 and initially incorporated in 1983 as the Dong Thap Pharmaceutical Union.
The firm was transformed from a state-owned enterprise into a joint-stock company and renamed Imexpharm Corporation, with its shares floated on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange on December 4, 2006.
As of September 30, 2020, Imexpharm had had 1,252 employees, total assets of VND2.072 trillion ($89.73 million), and six pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities.
Established in 1966, ADB is owned by 68 members—49 from Asia and the Pacific region.