Addis Ababa: The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has pledged to explore international market opportunities for domestic medical manufacturers with a view to encourage the nation’s industrial competitiveness.

Representatives and leaders from the ministry and various institutions visit local medical products manufacturing and innovation exhibition that was officially opened by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on Saturday at the Millennium Hall.

The exhibition aims to boost the local medical manufacturing sector and highlight Ethiopia’s healthcare investment opportunities, showcasing domestically produced medical products and services.

Following the visit to the exhibition, spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Nebiyou Tedla emphasized the importance of expanding market access for medical products, especially to neighboring countries.

He added that locally manufactured medical products can play a pivotal role in enhancing the health sector and in bolstering efforts to enhance medical tourism.

The
ambassador also underscored the need for meeting stringent quality standards to expand local production and supply for the international market.

The spokesperson noted that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has given top priority to economic diplomacy as the kernel of the entire diplomacy including the promotion of domestically manufactured products.

Accordingly, Nebiyou said the ministry will contribute its fair share in the endeavors to explore international market opportunities for local medical manufacturers.

He added the promotion activities for those local medical manufacturers will be conducted by Ethiopia’s foreign missions, consulates and diplomats.

Minister of Health Mekdes Daba stated that over the past three days, approximately 28,000 people have visited the local medical products manufacturing and innovation exhibition.

She highlighted that the exhibition provides an opportunity for small and large-scale manufacturers to share best practices and gain access to a variety of products.

The suppl
y of domestically manufactured medicines has risen sharply to 36 percent during the past three years, a substantial increase from the previous 8 percent driven by strong government support aimed at encouraging local manufacturers, Mekdes said.

She further highlighted that the encouraging achievements attained this year, noting that the country has successfully manufactured medical products to enhance import substitution.

This has resulted in significant savings in foreign currency by substituting over 53 million US dollars worth of medical products, the minister figured out.

Mekdes explained that the government has established mechanisms to strive towards self-sufficiency in medical and medicine supplies. This includes creating health policies and regulations concerning drugs, she elaborated.

On his part, Provisional Coordinator of Channel One Program Coordinating Directorate at Ministry of Finance, Degu Lakew affirmed the ministry’s commitment to allocating budgets for importing essential medical inputs
needed by local manufacturers.

More than 110 manufacturers from the sector are participating in the exhibition, which has brought about networking opportunities for investors, panel discussions, and various programs. And the exhibition will remain open until 27th June 2024, it was learnt.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency

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