A $321-million pharmaceutical park is to be developed within the Dawa Industrial Zone (DIZ) in the Greater Accra Region, to serve as a one-stop shop for the processing and manufacturing of pharmaceutical products like drugs.
The 150-acre Pharma Park, the first in the country, is a collaboration between Ghana National Chamber of Pharmacy (GNCP) and Dawa City Limited, a subsidiary of LMI Holdings and manager of the DIZ.
At two-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to that effect was yesterday signed in Accra by Harrison Abutiate, Chairman of GNCP, and Opoku Boamah, Managing Director of Southern Unity Group, a subsidiary of LMI Holdings.
Mr Abutiate said at the ceremony that the move was part of a grand plan to boost the local pharmaceutical industry and ensure that the country produced between 60 and 80 per cent of medicines.
He said that part plan was to make the country the pharmaceutical hub in the West African sub-region and reduce the cost of producing competitive products through a clustering system.
He mentioned the park would enhance the role the pharmaceutical sector ought to play towards the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goal three on health, which includes access to quality medicines and vaccines for all.
Mr Abutiate said already, 15 members of the chamber had expressed interest in setting up in the enclave while a number of distributors whose products were produced abroad would relocate gradually.
According to him, the chamber would set up a Special Purpose Vehicle to serve as a legal entity for investment in the enclave and provide critical services to members of the chamber.
Concerning investments, he said the Ghana Export-Import (GEXIM) Bank and other international finance firms had expressed willingness to support pharmaceutical firms in the procurement of lands and construction of facilities.
“For all these to happen quickly, we need the government’s intervention,” he said and listed support areas to include tax breaks, interest rate reduction, direct capital provision and dualisation of the Dawa-Accra road to ease traffic.
The Chairman of GNPC said the MoU signalled the positioning of the country’s pharmaceutical sector as a force to reckon with in West Africa, and LMI Holdings stood ready to support the realisation of that vision.
Mr Boamah said the 200-acre DIZ had been demarked to suit specialised manufacturing firms with stable power and water supply and fibre-optic network to provide exclusive Internet connectivity to ensure seamless operation of companies.
“The signing of the MoU marked the consolidation of a true private sector cooperation.
We must seize the opportunity to collaborate to move the nation forward,” he said.