Essential Drugs Production in Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS): Opportunities and Challenges

Document Type: Review Article


1 Higher Colleges of Technology, Al Ain, UAE

2 The Wharton Entrepreneurship and Family Business Research Centre, University of Pennsylvania, CERT Technology Park, Abu Dhabi, UAE


The objective of this work is to elucidate various essential drugs in the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) countries. It discusses the opportunities and challenges of the existing biotech infrastructure and the production of drugs and vaccines in member states of the BRICS. This research is based on a systematic literature review between the years 2000 and 2014 of documents retrieved from the databases Embase, PubMed/Medline, Global Health, and Google Scholar, and the websites of relevant international organizations, research institutions and philanthropic organizations. Findings vary from one member state to another. These include useful comparison between the BRICS countries in terms of pharmaceuticals expenditure versus total health expenditure, local manufacturing of drugs/vaccines using technology and know-how transferred from developed countries, and biotech entrepreneurial collaborations under the umbrella of the BRICS region. This study concludes by providing recommendations to support more of inter collaborations among the BRICS countries as well as between BRICS and many developing countries to shrink drug production costs. In addition, this collaboration would also culminate in reaching out to poor countries that are not able to provide their communities and patients with cost-effective essential  medicines.


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