An African Medicines Agency (AMA) is set to be established by 2018 so as to provide a platform for coordination and strengthening of on-going initiatives to harmonise medicine regulation across Africa, reports African News Agency.
The African Union is currently looking through a drafted business plan and the legal framework that would be applicable to the technical group, regulators, experts of legal and public health across the continent so as to align to the requirements for establishing the medical agency according to the director of Social Affairs at the African Union Commission Dr. Janet Byaruhanga
The Medical Agency legally mandated by member states of the African Union is meant to coordinate national and sub-regional regulatory systems for medical products, offer regulatory oversight of selected medical products to start with, promote cooperation, harmonization and mutual recognition of regulatory decision. It will also encourage a more effective oversight on curtailing substandard medical products and inspire competition between local medicine manufacturers.
African Medicines Agency will bring expertise together for maximum use of limited resources available for regulatory authorities to complement their efforts and harmonise their activities.
AUC will work with World Health Organization as per the memorandum of understanding between them and the first African Minister of Health meeting held in Angola in 2014.
“It is increasingly becoming evident that no single country, including well-resourced countries can efficiently and effectively regulate its own market alone in this globalised market” said Byaruhanga
It is estimated about 95 percent of API (active pharmaceutical ingredients) and 75 percent of finished products are imported from outside Africa.