Coronavirus: Pharmaceutical products importers raise alarm on declining fortunes




Nigerian pharmaceutical importers, under the aegis of the Nigerian Representatives of Overseas Pharmaceutical Manufacturers, have lamented the effect of Coronavirus on their businesses, saying it is already affecting their first-quarter turnover.

The outbreak of the Coronavirus has reportedly had adverse effects on a number of businesses, especially those who majorly import from China. The virus has caused prices of goods to skyrocket as China is one of Nigeria’s major trading partners.

According to the President of the association, Mr. Biofem Soremekun, the outbreak of Covid-19 has had a major effect on some companies whose major imports came from China.

Soremekun noted that some pharmaceutical products manufactured around December before the Chinese holiday were yet to be shipped to Nigeria due to the outbreak. He also made known that many Chinese manufacturers had been unable to go back to their factories to work and as a result, some products are unavailable in the market.

“What this means is that we have lost one additional month. If we are to factor in the inevitable challenges of port congestion here in Nigeria, it might take another two or three months before the shipment eventually finds its way into our warehouse.

“Definitely, that is going to create a stock-out for us. I am talking about scarcity of some specific products. This is one part of how coronavirus has disrupted our activities. The other part has to do with our Chinese manufacturers’ inability to return to their factories because the government has not authorised them to start production,” said Soremekun.

The Coronavirus outbreak in China, which is the world’s second-largest economy by GDP, took everyone by surprise. The disease has also spread beyond China to other Asian countries, countries in the Middle East, Europe, and even North Africa. Many now fear this might soon become a pandemic.

So far, mainland China’s official death toll has hit 2,592, with more than 77,000 people reportedly infected.

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