Aspen PH new pharmaceutical firm on the blockBy Theresa S. Samaniego
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The road to provide every citizen quality healthcare, through quality and affordable medicine, is a long and treacherous one.
The Philippines, sadly, is nowhere near completing even half of that difficult trek as currently more than 60 percent of Filipinos who succumb to sickness and die had been deprived of quality, effective and safe medicine.
Although the government does its part to give Filipinos access to quality healthcare and affordable medicines, more effective measures are needed to effect sustainable and long-term changes that will provide the public, especially the underprivileged, the means to acquire even the most basic form of medication.
And this is where the private sector can play a bigger role—when the multinational pharmaceutical firms take it upon themselves to ensure that more people will be able to avail of their medicines, among other measures.
Recently, the Philippines welcomed on its shores Aspen, Africa’s largest pharmaceutical manufacturer and the biggest listed pharmaceutical group in the healthcare sector.
First Asian subsidiary
Aspen Philippines is the first Aspen subsidiary in Asia, which will serve as the region’s gateway for the Aspen brand of affordable and quality medicines.
“We take great pride in formally opening our office in the Philippines. This business initiative forms part of Aspen’s stated global expansion strategy into emerging and established markets, and we look forward to working closely with the Philippine government and local regulatory bodies in providing quality products to meet the healthcare needs of the Filipino people,” said Aspen Group chief executive Stephen Saad during Aspen Philippines’ media launch.
The establishment of Aspen Philippines is seen to improve the quality of healthcare in the country by providing quality and affordable innovator brands of antibiotic, antihypertension, antigout, antiplatelet and antihypothyroidism medicines.
Also, Aspen products are renowned for their efficacy, quality and affordability.
Aspen Philippines started operations January of this year with only four employees and has after a few months increased to nearly a hundred.
“We are honored and grateful that Aspen chose to establish its first Asian subsidiary in the Philippines. Our partnership with a global pharmaceutical leader not only makes medicines of superior quality with prices that are within means available to Filipino patients, it also provides employment to local talents,” added Aspen Philippines president and CEO Ace Itchon.
Part of commitment
“This is part of our commitment to be a steadfast partner of the government in its endeavor to improve healthcare access and to provide greater employment opportunities for Filipinos, as well,” Itchon further said.
Itchon added that “as a trusted pharmaceutical company, Aspen is committed to positively impacting people’s lives by providing Filipino healthcare providers and consumers with effective and safe medicines that are within the means of the ordinary Filipino.”
Zuellig Pharma Corp., the leading healthcare distribution specialist in Asia Pacific and one of Aspen Philippines’ partners, will meanwhile ensure that Aspen products are always available in the local market, according to Itchon.
The Aspen Group is currently a supplier of branded and generic pharmaceuticals in some 100 countries across the globe, and of consumer and nutritional products in selected territories. Its manufacturing capability is set to exceed 8 billion tablets.
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