Elder Pharmaceuticals on Monday signed an agreement with Russia’s Holding PharmaEco for bilateral co-operation in the healthcare sector.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed as part of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit for the 13th annual Indo-Russian bilateral summit here, Elder Pharma said in a statement. Elder Pharmaceuticals’ Joint Managing Director Alok Saxena said India had already become most reliable supplier of quality drugs to Russia and that potential for enhanced exports was promising.

Holding PharmaEco is one of the leading healthcare companies in Russia and has six subsidiaries. The company is into the distribution of medicines, equipment and various other medical products. Its annual turnover for last year stood at $1.12 billion and it employs more than 800 people across countries.

Pharma programme

Under the ‘Pharma 2020’ programme of the Russian government, leading Indian pharma companies have started engaging with Russian partners to consider the possibility of joint investments.

India and Russia are in the process of liberalising registration of new drugs in order to boost bilateral trade in the pharmaceutical sector.

The Russian pharmaceutical market was estimated to be around $18 billion in 2010. Due to lack of locally manufactured products, the country heavily depends on imported drugs.

As per estimates, India has a meagre 3 per cent share of the total $12 billion-worth drugs that Russia imports.

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