With the surge in demand for hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malarial drug deemed to be useful in dealing with COVID-19, the pharmaceutical industry has produced 20 crore HCQ tablets this month, said Pankaj Patel, CEO of Zydus Cadila in Ahmedabad, on Saturday.
"The pharmaceutical industry has significantly increased the production of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ). 20 crore tablets of HCQ have been produced by the industry this month," Patel told ANI.
To meet the domestic and foreign demand for hydroxychloroquine, Cadila will produce 30 tonnes of active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) equivalent to 15 crore tablets next month.
"We have sufficient stock available, not only for the domestic market, but we would be able to supply to the world if the need arises. My company will produce 30 tonnes of API equivalent to 15 crore tablets next month," he said.
Several countries have requested India for the supply of the said drug even as the globally confirmed cases of the virus, which originated in China's Wuhan last year, has surpassed 1.5 million. India has cleared the first list of 13 countries for hydroxychloroquine which includes the USA, Spain, Germany, Bahrain, Brazil, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Maldives, and Bangladesh.
They said USA had asked for 48 lakh tablets of HCQ and India has sanctioned 35.82 lakh tablets, sources said.