The Union ministry of chemicals and fertilizers has asked the Himachal Pradesh government to submit revised bulk drug park proposal as per the guidelines of the scheme for promotion of bulk drug parks issued by the department of pharmaceuticals (DoP) on July 27, 2020.
The scheme envisages creation of three bulk drug parks in the country with an outlay of Rs. 1,000 crore each. The grant-in-aid will be 90 per cent of the project cost in case of North-East and hilly states and 70 per cent in case of other states.
Earlier Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jairam Thakur had submitted a complete proposal to develop bulk drug park in Nalagarh to Union minister of chemicals and fertilizers D V Sadananda Gowda and Union minister of state for finance Anurag Thakur.
The state industries department identified 2,000 acres of government land at Dheerowal in Nalagarh for setting up the bulk drugs park.
Himachal Pradesh has 700 drug formulation units consuming APIs ranging from Rs. 25,000 crore to Rs. 28,000 crore. Of them, 350 drug units are located in Baddi where the bulk drug park is set to come up. Around 40-50 drug companies located in Baddi have evinced interest in setting up units in the proposed bulk drug park.
The Chief Minister had forwarded the proposal to the Union chemicals and fertilizers ministry with an appeal to earmark grants for building basic infrastructure in the API park. He also appealed to the ministry to reduce land requirement for the bulk drug park from 1,600 acres to 1,000 acres for hilly areas.
Responding to him, Gowda stated that the DoP has notified the scheme for promotion of bulk drug parks vide gazette notification dated July 21, 2020. The states are to be selected on a challenge mode and the detailed guidelines of the scheme, incorporating this, have been issued on July 27, 2020. The guidelines elaborate the selection criteria and the procedure for submission of proposals by the states desirous of setting up of bulk drug parks under the scheme. As per the guidelines, the minimum land area required for establishing a bulk drug park in hilly states is 750 acres, said the Union minister for chemicals and fertilizers.
He exhorted the state government of Himachal to send the proposal as per the guidelines of the scheme. The Union ministry of chemicals and fertilizers has also written to Dr Rajesh Gupta, president, Himachal Drug Manufacturers Association (HDMA) in this regard.
Confirming this, Dr Gupta said “The Himachal Pradesh government is going to submit revised bulk drug park proposal to the Union chemicals and fertilizers ministry as per July 27, 2020 guidelines by September 30, 2020.”
As per the guidelines, states will be selected through a challenge method. The states interested in setting up the parks will have to ensure assured 24X7 supply of electricity and water to the bulk drug units located in the park and submit an undertaking that they will not increase land lease rent and utility charges beyond 5% per annum for the next 10 years.
The location of the proposed park should not fall under eco-sensitive zone of protected areas and it should be well connected with railways, national highway, port, airport, etc. All these would be taken into account while selecting the states.
The ease of doing business ranking of the state, incentive policies of the state applicable to the bulk drug industry, availability of technical manpower in the state, availability of pharmaceutical/chemical clusters in the state will also be factored in while selecting the states. The states will be ranked based on scores obtained in all these parameters.
The states getting top three ranks will be selected. The selected states are required to submit their proposal within 60 days of the date of issuance of the guidelines.
The grant-in-aid will be released in four installments. First three installments will be 30 per cent each and the last will be 10 per cent of the grant-in-aid. The selected states will have to complete the park as per the approved detailed project report within two years of the date of release of the first installment of grant-in-aid. It is envisaged to have a single-window system in these parks for all regulatory approvals under one roof. The creation of a centre of excellence is also envisaged to enable an ecosystem for research and development.