GSK Exits Nigeria Amid Calls for Local Meds Production

British pharmaceutical firm GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is leaving Nigeria after a 51-year presence, dropping its plan to increase its stake in GSK Consumer Nigeria, its consumer healthcare business in the country, following opposition from minority shareholders.

GSK has seen a drop in half-year sales from U.S.$19 million to U.S.$10 million in the same period a year ago. This has been attributed to increasing local competition and imported medications from India and China.

In May 2023, Ozioruva Aliu wrote for Vanguard, that there has been increasing calls, including from pressure group the National Movement for the Actualization of Good Governance - consisting of lawyers, doctors, engineers, journalists, pharmacists, and others - putting pressure on Nigerian shareholders in GSK Consumer Nigeria plc over among others, the need for the indigenous production of drugs.

In June 2023, the pressure group also challenged GSKs claims that foreign exchange policies caused a shortage of drugs and medications in Nigeria.

It is still unclear what this move would mean for GSK employees in Nigeria.

(file photo).

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