03 July 2017 | News
The $250 million programme of the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Ministry of Science & Technology, is a first- of-its-kind mission that brings together industry and academia to promote entrepreneurship and indigenous manufacturing in the biopharmaceutical sector
With an aim of creating a globally competitive biopharmaceutical industry that can addresses the country’s major concerns around barriers to affordable healthcare; innovate in India (i3) programme was recently launched by Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Science & Technology , Earth Sciences, Environment, Forest & Climate Change in New Delhi.
The $250 million programme of the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Ministry of Science & Technology, is a first- of-its-kind mission that brings together industry and academia to promote entrepreneurship and indigenous manufacturing in the biopharmaceutical sector. This flagship programme of the GOI in collaboration with World Bank, will be implemented by Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC), a Public Sector Enterprise, set up by DBT.
Dr Harsh Vardhan stated “This Mission is anticipated to be a game changer for the Indian Bio-pharmaceutical industry. It aspires to create an enabling ecosystem to promote entrepreneurship and indigenous manufacturing in the sector”.
Expanding on the scope of the programme Dr K. VijayRaghavan, Secretary, Department of Biotechnology & Chairman BIRAC shared, that “This endeavor will help nurture next- generation technical skills; promote entrepreneurship; and support institutions in adoption of global innovations, technologies, and licensing models. It will provide young entrepreneurs the confidence as well as the systemic support to pursue their aspirations in biotechnological innovation, and transform India into a global hub for cutting-edge biotechnology research and development”.
With an aim to provide a level playing field for new entrants, the programme would open calls for research proposals beginning August and roll-out in October this year.
Speaking at the occasion, Dr Renu Swarup, Senior Adviser DBT & MD, BIRAC shared, “We undertook an extensive landscaping study to identify critical gaps impeding growth and innovation in the Biopharma sector. Taking cognizance of these gaps, i3 is focussed on targeted measures to develop platform technologies for product validation, link disparate institutions to strengthen clinical trial networks, promote partial de-risking for novel products, and build capacities in emerging areas such as translational bioinformatics, bioethics etc.”
The Mission was launched in the presence of Dr K. VijayRaghavan; Junaid Ahmad, Country Director, World Bank India; dignitaries from the concerned Ministries: Dr Soumya Swaminathan, DG- ICMR; Dr J.P Prakash; Secretary Department of Pharmaceuticals, Dr GN Singh DCGI and DBT officials.