Zaw Moe Khaing, President of Myanmar Medicines and Medical Equipments Entrepreneurs Association, has requested medicine companies not to suspend the sale of medicines and increase prices for medicines.
“I understand the difficulties merchants are facing. I would like to request merchants not to suspend the sale of medicines for patients. In practice, my request would not meet 100 per cent success. The dollar appreciation is nothing to do with us. The ministry of Planning and Finance and the central bank are mainly responsible for it,” he added.
On September 20, the association issued a statement urging medicine companies to sell medicines at the suitable prices and not to temporarily suspend the sale of medicines in the medical market in order to avoid causing a heavy burden to hospitals, clinics, doctors and patients and a shortage of medicines in the markets.
The country can produce about 18 per cent of local medicine demand and has to import the rest from other countries.
“The country needs to carry out mass production of medicines in order to avoid higher medicine prices caused by the greenback appreciation. The country has to import 85 to 90 per cent of medicines. Medicine prices mainly rely on dollar price. Some companies can sell medicines at the normal prices as they have medicine stocks in hand,” he added.
Medicine prices have increased by three to seven per cent due to the greenback appreciation, according to merchants from Shwepyaesone market, the biggest medicine wholesale market in Myanmar.
Myanmar mainly imports medicines from medicine companies based in Thailand, China and India.