Dar es Salaam — Health minister Ummy Mwalimu on Thursday, February 21, 2019 issued a one-week ultimatum to Tanzania Electric Supply Company (Tanesco) to supply electricity to new pharmaceutical firms; Vista Pharma Ltd and Kairuki Pharmaceutical Ltd located in the Coast Region in order to facilitate installation of machines.
The minister also directed the water authority in the region to supply the precious liquid to the firms by March 21 so as to ease the construction works taking place at the area.
The minister issued the directives during her tour of the region aimed at inspecting the ongoing construction of the two pharmaceutical firms, accompanied by other government officials from Ministry for Trade and Industry and Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC), according to the health ministry's communications unit.
During her tour, the minister also vowed to address unresolved challenges hampering the local and foreign investors who are keen on establishing pharmaceutical firms in Tanzania, among others.
Ms Mwalimu further expressed optimism saying the completion of the firms would enable the government to save sums of money that it spent to purchase drugs and medical supplies abroad.
"The completion of the industries will boost availability of essential medicines and medical supplies at a cheap price and will improve the delivery of healthcare services in the country," said Ms Mwalimu.
Adding: "Currently the government through Medical Store Department (MSD) is forced to wait up to six months to receive purchased medicines and medical supplies from abroad. But when the local manufacturers start the production, we will be able to have them on time."
Moreover, the minister thanked the local investors for establishing the pharmaceutical firms, admitting that the country still experiences a shortage of medicines and medical supplies in some areas despite the government's efforts to purchase and distribute them in the public health facilities across the country.