The pharmaceutical industry in India is gearing up for the interim Budget 2024, and it has expressed its need for conducive policies that provide benefits in terms of both direct and indirect taxes. With the industry projected to reach a market size of $400–450 billion by 2047, there is also a strong demand for incentives to promote research and development.
In a statement, Sudarshan Jain, the Secretary General of the Indian Pharmaceutical Alliance, highlighted the challenges faced by the industry in terms of research and development. He emphasized the high risk, long gestation period, and low success rate associated with research, which necessitates continuous investments.
To address these challenges and foster growth in the sector, the pharma industry is urging the government to outline policies in the budget that not only provide tax benefits but also facilitate ease of doing business for pharmaceutical companies. This includes streamlining regulatory processes, reducing bureaucratic hurdles, and promoting a favorable investment climate.
The pharmaceutical industry plays a crucial role in the healthcare ecosystem, providing essential medicines and contributing to the overall well-being of the population. Therefore, it is imperative to support and nurture this sector through favorable policies that encourage innovation and research.
One of the key demands of the industry is the provision of incentives for research and development activities. Investing in research is a risky endeavor, with uncertain outcomes and significant financial implications. By offering tax incentives and other financial support, the government can encourage pharmaceutical companies to invest in cutting-edge research, leading to the development of new drugs and therapies.
Additionally, the industry seeks a reduction in the overall tax burden. High taxes can hamper the growth of the pharma sector and make medicines more expensive for consumers. By implementing favorable tax policies, the government can not only boost the industry but also make healthcare more affordable and accessible to the general public.
Furthermore, the pharma industry is calling for measures to simplify regulatory processes. The current regulatory framework can be complex and time-consuming, leading to delays in the approval of new drugs and therapies. By streamlining these processes and ensuring transparency, the government can facilitate faster access to innovative treatments for patients.
In line with the government’s vision of ease of doing business, the pharma industry also seeks reforms to reduce bureaucratic hurdles. This includes simplifying licensing procedures, reducing red tape, and promoting a business-friendly environment. Such measures will not only attract investment but also enhance the competitiveness of Indian pharmaceutical companies on the global stage.
As Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presents the interim budget on February 1, all eyes will be on the announcements related to the promotion of research, tax incentives, and ease of doing business for the pharma industry. These policies will shape the future of the sector and determine its ability to contribute to India’s healthcare goals.
According to Viren Shetty, Executive Vice Chairman of Narayana Health, “we expect the interim Union Budget 2024–25 to unveil a roadmap for addressing long-term infrastructure financing, increasing the number of medical and nursing colleges, and fiscal reforms in the health insurance sector.”
In conclusion, the pharma industry is eagerly awaiting the interim budget for 2024 and is hopeful for the introduction of conducive policies that provide benefits in terms of both direct and indirect taxes. By offering incentives for research and development, reducing the tax burden, simplifying regulatory processes, and promoting ease of doing business, the government can support the growth of the pharma sector and ensure affordable access to quality healthcare for all.