A project, co-sponsored by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), got under way in Afghanistan today with the arrival in Kabul of donated production machinery for the country's first-ever generic medicine factory, which will eventually produce 300 million to 400 million tablets of safe, urgently needed analgesics and antibiotics for local use.
The machinery will equip a newly-constructed factory named Baz International Pharmaceutical Company Limited. The locally produced generic medicines will significantly improve the availability of safe, effective and affordable medication in the country, UNDP said.
The plant will be fully Afghan-owned and will be managed by Dr. Karim Baz, an experienced local doctor. Approximately 40 local employees will be taught relevant operating skills and production technology.
The "Afghan Generic Medicines Project," initially launched in 2002, brings together private and public partners, including the Swiss non-profit organization Business Humanitarian Forum (BHF), the Brussels-based European Generic Medicines Association (EGA) and the UNDP Country Office in Afghanistan.
Currently, one-quarter of all Afghan children die before the age of 5, often due to the lack of proper medication for treatable infectious diseases.