Published date: 31-Jan-2018
Source: Prothom Alo

Novo Nordisk signs MoU with Eskayef for advanced insulin manufacturing

Source: Prothom Alo

In a moment of historical significance, Danish pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk on Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding with Eskayef Pharmaceuticals Ltd of Bangladesh for state-of-the-art technology transfer for advanced insulin manufacturing. “This is a defining moment for Novo Nordisk in Bangladesh,” said Sebnem Avsar Tuna, corporate vice president of the company’s Oceania and South East Asia regions, at a ceremony held to mark the signing of the MoU at a local hotel in Dhaka. Under this agreement, for the first time ever Danish advanced technology for manufacturing state-of-the-art insulin devices of Novo Nordisk will be undertaken outside of Denmark. “This is a great moment for Eskayef,” said Latifur Rahman, chairman of Transcom Ltd and Eskayef Pharmaceuticals. “But more importantly, it is a proud moment for Bangladesh. Novo Nordisk is the world leader in insulin. Although Eskayef has been manufacturing vials, the Penfill insulin injector has been produced exclusively in Denmark. Now, for the first time, Novo Nordisk has decided to partner with Eskayef to manufacture the Penfill in Bangladesh.” Latifur Rahman said that this achievement marked the level of advancement in Bangladesh’s pharmaceutical industry, with 95 per cent of the country’s requirements being met locally. He expressed confidence that Bangladesh would be a major player in the global export market for pharmaceuticals within the next few years. State minister for health Zahid Malik MP said while contagious diseases like polio and cholera had been eliminated from the country, people’s financial solvency had given rise to non-communicable diseases such as obesity and diabetes. “Officially seven million people are affected with diabetes in the country, but the number is probably much higher,” he said. He lauded the joint venture between Novo Nordisk and Eskayef for the manufacture of advanced insulin devices, recommending that this should be affordable for the diabetic patients in the country. Danish ambassador in Bangladesh Mikael Hemniti Winther hailed the signing of the MoU as an example of strengthening of cooperation and friendship between Bangladesh and Denmark. “This is the beginning of something new and we hope there is even more coming up ahead,” he said. The MoU was signed by Anand Shetty, Novo Nordisk managing director, and Simeen Hossain, managing director and CEO of the Eskayef Pharmaceuticals Limited, on behalf of their respective sides. Also present on the occasion were Lars Bo Smidt, corporate vice president of Novo Nordisk, Dr AK Azad Khan, president of the Diabetic Association of Bangladesh (DAB), DG Drug Administration major general Mustafizur Rahman and others.