Novo Nordisk Algeria: the serious accusations of Minister Benbahmed

During the last interview granted by the President of the Republic, Abdelmadjid Tebboune to the national press, this Saturday, April 23, 2022, indicated that he had set up a General Inspectorate of the Presidency of the Republic to investigate the reasons for the shortage of certain medications.

One of the drugs most sought after by patients and which often encounters shortages is insulin. It was on the subject of tensions over the availability of insulin that the Minister for the Pharmaceutical Industry, Lotfi Benbahmed, spoke on Wednesday April 27 on DZ News, pointing in particular to the Novo Nordisk laboratory, which specializes in diabetes treatments.

The Minister accused this laboratory, saying “We have granted the Novo Nordisk laboratory a plan to import three million units (of insulin) in 2021. Since then, they have been bringing back small quantities, 100,000 to 200,000 boxes per month. “, he also accused the laboratory of “creating tensions which can cause a certain fear among patients and doctors” in Algeria.

According to Lotfi Benbahmed, “They go to doctors to frighten patients into believing that there will be disturbances in the market and that they will no longer be able to find their products, and so that whoever buys two boxes a month, he buys three.

According to the Minister of Pharmaceutical Industry, the pressure from this laboratory on insulin in Algeria is due to the fact that the ministry has lowered import prices, because Algeria is the laboratory’s first customer. on Africa, even on the entire Mena region. But the prices in Algeria were higher than those in Tunisia, for example.

Benbahmed talks about the Saidal – Novo Nordisk partnership

In February 2021, the Ministry of Pharmaceutical Industry announced that a partnership project was being prepared between Saïdal and the Danish laboratory for the local production of insulin from 2021-2022. It should also be remembered that Novo Nordisk has a factory located in Tizi-Ouzou, which annually produces 20 million units of insulin, in dry form. But during the same interview, the minister accused the laboratory of postponing the partnership with the public pharmaceutical group Saidal for the production of insulin.

Lotfi Benbahmed announced that “we are currently in the process of registering similar organic drugs to get out of this monopoly”, and that a warning has been sent to the Danish laboratory Novo Nordisk, which risks financial sanctions.

The Minister of Pharmaceutical Industry said that the laboratories are known around the world to exert pressure and lobbying saying: “It is known in the world, there are laboratories which exert lobbying throughout the advertising, promotion and travel. The new Algeria will not give up”.

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