Dr Patel: benefitting from global collaborations

Dr Patel: benefitting from global collaborations

Wockhardt opens $40m unit in Jafza

The opening of a research-centric global pharmaceutical and biotech company in the regional trade hub marks another milestone in DP World’s business and industrial parks

November 2018

Wockhardt, a global pharmaceutical company, has expanded into the Middle East with the opening of a $40 million state-of-the-art facility for manufacturing new chemical entities (NCEs) in Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) in Dubai, UAE.

The pharma major chose Jafza after extensive research and found the Zone to be the most appropriate for setting up its manufacturing facility.

Dr Khorakiwala: poised for a quantum leap

Dr Khorakiwala: poised for a quantum leap

“Wockhardt conducted extensive studies for identifying a region in the Middle East to establish a strong manufacturing presence for its advanced patented drugs. Jafza was found to be appropriate for the factory premises for manufacturing patented proprietary drugs for global markets,” Dr Habil Khorakiwala, founder chairman of Wockhardt, said.

Jafza is home to 306 healthcare and pharmaceutical companies from 54 countries. UAE’s pharmaceutical and healthcare market is expected to increase by an additional Dh12.45 billion ($3.4 billion) from 2019 to 2021.

According to a report by BMI research, the UAE’s pharmaceutical and healthcare markets are among the region’s best-performers, growing from Dh62.30 billion in 2017 to Dh65.68 billion in 2018 and Dh78.13 billion in 2021.

Sultan Bin Sulayem, Group chairman and CEO, DP World, said: “The healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors are key strategic targets in the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030. As a trade and logistics hub, Jafza fully supports this vision and we are determined to help it grow.

“We warmly welcome Wockhardt to Jebel Ali Free Zone. The opening of a research-centric global pharmaceutical and biotech company like Wockhardt in Jafza marks another milestone moment in our efforts to encourage pharmaceutical companies to establish their manufacturing facilities, as well as knowledge and R&D centres in DP World’s business and industrial parks.”

Dr H Khorakiwala: Jafza was appropriate for the unit

Dr H Khorakiwala: Jafza was appropriate for the unit

Dr Khorakiwala said the company is poised to make a major breakthrough in the development of antimicrobial drugs to fight the emerging threat of superbugs.

“With Wockhardt’s commitment to R&D, we have five breakthrough NCEs that have been accorded Qualified Infectious Disease Product (QIDP) status by US FDA. With the new facility in the Middle East, we aim to focus on our commitment in developing medicines that can fight antimicrobial resistance,” said Dr Khorakiwala.

Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) – the ability of infections to resist antibiotics to work against it – is increasingly recognised as a growing global health problem. Infections caused by antimicrobial-resistant strains of bacteria - also called ‘superbugs’ – are unlikely to respond to standard treatments resulting in prolonged illness and a greater risk to health, and severely impacting clinical outcomes, leading to further higher healthcare costs due to consumption of healthcare resources.

Dr Mahesh Patel, chief scientific officer of New Drug Discovery, Wockhardt said: “Wockhardt’s drug discovery programme has immensely benefited from global collaborations with universities and scientists of international repute in the areas of public health, Infectious diseases and clinical microbiology”.

Wockhardt currently has five novel antibiotic drugs in advanced stages of global clinical development which will be effective against these “superbugs” threats identified by the Center of Disease Control, USA. Considering the strategic importance of these antibiotics, the US FDA has granted Qualified Infectious Disease Program (QIDP) status to the five novel antibiotic drugs.

“Wockhardt has dedicated significant resources for the discovery and development of these novel antibiotics, which are in advanced stages of development and a culmination of 20 years of focused research,” said Dr Murtaza Khorakiwala, managing director of Wockhardt.

The 10,000-sq-m facility in Dubai is equipped with fully automated manufacturing equipment, creating a self-sufficient environment for handling, warehousing, manufacturing operations, product testing and product stability.

“The facility will work on the exhibit batches and will be offered for inspection by the regulators at an appropriate time,” he added. The facility meets the needs of Aseptic Dry Powder Injectable manufacturing and filling with a high-quality operation. This facility is dedicated to launch its novel NCEs in the antibiotics segment to the world from UAE.

“Wockhardt is poised for a quantum leap into the future. It is a future of dynamic changes, exciting possibilities and endless potential to further its goal of ‘Life Wins’ and Wockhardt is committed to shaping this future,” added Dr Khorakiwala.

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