Nigeria and India Collaborate to Fight Counterfeit Drugs

The fight against counterfeit drugs affects every country and that is why it is important that nations work together to stop the deadly scourge. This fact is not lost on Nigeria, which is working with India to ensure that all medicines brought into the African nation are authentic.

According to, most of the pharmaceutical products in Nigeria come from India and China, which is why cooperation between the countries is so vital.

“India is one of the largest exporters of pharmaceuticals into Nigeria and Indian pharmaceutical companies are constantly in touch with Nigeria’s National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) and have institutionalized pre-export inspection in India to control export of substandard drugs to Nigeria,” former Indian minister of state for commerce and industry Rajiv Pratap Rudy has said of the relationship between the two countries.

Like his predecessor Professor Dora Akunyili, Dr. Paul Orhii, the director-general of NAFDAC, has visited India to speak with officials about how to deal with the menace of counterfeit drugs.

One of the ideas discussed on Orhii’s trip was the possibility of opening retail pharmacy outlets across Nigeria with the help of the Indian government to replace the unregulated stores in the African nation that often deal with counterfeit drugs.

Furthering this idea, the possibility of Indian pharmaceutical companies opening manufacturing facilities in Nigeria was discussed. This would likely give the Nigerian government additional oversight of the drugs taken by its citizens.

India’s High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mahesh Sachdev, said that most Nigerian’s interactions with his country come in the form of medication.

“I think more people in West Africa know India through our medicines than any other product range,” he said. “Pharmaceuticals from India are the market leader in Nigeria, with over 30 percent share.”

Sachdev also said that India and Nigeria were working together to combat counterfeit drugs.

“Indian and Nigerian governments are collaborating extensively, including training NAFDAC cadres in India to combat this menace,” he said. “Unsurprisingly, most of such cases of fake ‘Indian’ medicines are not from India at all. These are made elsewhere, but given famous Indian brand names and marked ‘Made in India ‘ to exploit trust of the unsuspecting buyers. We simply urge you to report all such cases to NAFDAC and to us.”