Victor Khristenko, the Minister of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation, chaired a working meeting with Board Chairman and Director of Novartis Daniel Vasella.

In the course of the meeting, they discussed perspectives of the company’s growing presence in the Russian market by means of expanding the manufacturing and research infrastructure in Russia. 

The minister presented the core issues of the Strategy of the Russian pharmaceutical industry development until 2020. He said that the Strategy is ‘an uncontroversial combination of corporative strategies of market players and views the state has with regard to developing the innovative pharmaceutical sector’. He made a point of that ‘we see our principal mission over a long-term period in assisting start-up projects on the part of the government as well, then, in filling the gap between fundamental research and introduction of engineering results to the manufacturing’. He also added that it was planned to bring the share of pharmaceuticals made in Russia to 50% in the internal market by 2020 as compared to 20% of today. Victor Khristenko believes that the current weakening of the ruble can help encourage this process.

According to the Russian minister, to develop innovative manufacturing they will see at stake not the Russian market alone but the world one too on the whole. ‘As a matter of fact, this means a substantive transformation of the regulatory system working today in Russia in terms of harmonizing it with international standards. This will let us open a bilateral movement of products,’ Victor Khristenko stressed.

He stated that the companies would define themselves their own model to participate in the Russian market. Meanwhile, according to him, ‘there are good examples of big foreign players, who have either created a factory in Russia or purchased one and been developing this working active.’ Also, the minister noted that Russia could boast the good scientific school including that in chemistry and biotechnology. ‘Thus, to evolve a contract factory or start-up project in an innovation segment along with developing the research segment can also be effective,’ he added.

At the end of the meeting, Victor Khrisenko made a point of that the investor, who has come to Russia on clear grounds, who is willing to meet contract liabilities and who is interested to stay there long-term, is considered to be a Russian manufacturer. ‘Provided investors are ready to discuss perspectives with us and to be committed to long-term investments, this means they trust in what we do, but we equally feel our responsibility’, the Russian minister stated.

The meeting parties pointed out that they shared a common view on the perspectives of the Russian market development. Novartis representatives showed their interest to develop their manufacture and expand research capabilities in the Russian Federation.