Arrotex Chair applauds the Government’s medicine
manufacturing road map
Critical first steps to protecting patients and creating jobs
Melbourne: The Chair & CEO of Arrotex Pharmaceuticals (Arrotex), Mr Dennis Bastas, has welcomed the Morrison Government’s prioritising of medicine manufacturing as a critical first step to protecting Australia’s most vulnerable patients against future global supply chain shocks.
As the founder of Australia’s largest pharmaceutical company and one of the few remaining Australian-owned pharmaceutical businesses; Mr Bastas is a key member of the taskforce advising the Minister for Industry on the National Medicine-Medical Product Manufacturing Priority Roadmap.
Leading into the roadmap, Mr Bastas had presented the Government with a nation-building initiative to create a self-funding, advanced technology Australian Medicines and Vaccine Manufacturing and Development industry.
“It is my philanthropic intention to help the Australian Government solve a very deep economic and national security problem with a cost-effective solution that protects our most vulnerable Australians,” Mr Bastas said. “Creating a domestic medicines manufacturing capability can mitigate the need for the Federal and State governments to each host an expensive stockpile of medicines and it will create an advanced technology export industry for generations of Australians to work in.”
About one in four of prescriptions (78 million) dispensed through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) is filled with an Arrotex-manufactured medicine. This has provided Mr Bastas with a unique perspective on how best to protect Australia against medicine shortages.
Mr Bastas said the sudden and ferocious impact on the global supply chains for critically important medicines deeply surprised Australian suppliers.
“This is not because we didn’t understand our vulnerabilities but because we never imagined our major trading partners, such as India and China, would ever have a reason to shut-down access to its pharmaceutical manufacturing sector.”
Australia imports more than 90% of its medicines. Mr Bastas noted that it was simply not in the national interest to continue to do so.
“The Australian Government recognises this and the proposed roadmap for a vibrant sovereign medical manufacturing sector is a great first step,” Mr Bastas said. “I look forward to continuing to work with the Government to building our sovereign manufacturing capability to create jobs and provide uninterrupted medicines access for all Australians.”