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India lifts restrictions on export of Paracetamol formulations

The government has permitted the export of formulations made from Paracetamol, a notification from the DGFT showed

India lifts restrictions on export of Paracetamol formulations
India lifts restrictions on export of Paracetamol formulations
  • Paracetamol, which is a common medication for fever globally, is the most sought-after and widely used drug globally even since the COVID outbreak

  • Paracetamol and its formulations were among the 13 APIs and their formulations whose export was restricted by means of a notification on March 3

New Delhi: The government has permitted the export of formulations made from Paracetamol on Friday, a notification from the DGFT (Directorate General of Foreign Trade) showed. However, the restrictions on the export of Paracetamol APIs will continue to remain in place. The order released by the DGFT said that the order “further amended to the extent that the formulations made from Paracetamol, including FDC (fixed dose combinations), under any ITCHS code…, are made ‘free’ for export with immediate effect. However, Paracetamol APIs will remain restricted for export.”

Paracetamol most sought-after drug globally in the wake of COVID outbreak

Paracetamol, which is a common medication for fever globally, is the most sought-after and widely used drug globally even since the COVID outbreak. India is among the leading manufacturers of Paracetamol globally. Some of the major producers of the drug are Farmson Pharmaceuticals, Granules, Sri Krishna Pharma and Bharat Chemicals. The production capacity is somewhere around 5,000 tonnes a month. From an export perspective, it is a low value, high volume product.

The backdrop

Paracetamol and its formulations were among the 13 APIs and their formulations whose export was restricted by means of a notification on March 3. Barring Paracetamol and formulations made from it, the DGFT had on April 6 allowed the export of the 12 APIs and formulations made from them. Before the latest notification, only paracetamol continued to be under restriction for export. The decision to lift export restrictions on formulations made from Paracetamol comes close on the heels of another permitting shipment of anti-malarial drug Hydroxychroloquine (HCQ) to the US and several other countries. While the efficacy of Hydroxychroloquine in treating COVID-19 is yet to be ascertained clinically, it shot to prominence in the wake of US President Donald Trump recently describing the product as a “game changer.”

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