Julphar to resume exports to Saudi Arabia as ban lifts

The kingdom lifted a temporary suspension on the company's products following successful inspection of its facilities

Ras al Khaimah - June 30, 2010 - Operators handle pages of five hundred milligram tablets of the Type 1 Diabetes medicine Dialon along the conver belt of this packing machine in Gulf Pharmaceuticals Julphar in Ras al Khaimah, June 30, 2010. (Photo by Jeff Topping/The National)
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Gulf Pharmaceutical Industries (Julphar), one of the biggest drug manufacturers in the Middle East and Africa, will resume exporting its products to Saudi Arabia after authorities lifted a temporary ban on the sale of its products.

The company said the ban was lifted following a “successful inspection of its manufacturing facilities.”

“We would like to thank the SFDA (Saudi Food and Drug Authority) and UAE’s Ministry of Health and Prevention for their continued guidance and support as we worked together to implement further improvements in our manufacturing processes as per recommendations highlighted in their report,” Sheikh Saqer Humaid Al Qasimi, Julphar's chairman of the board, said.

“We will continue to strengthen our partnership and cooperation with all relevant regional authorities today and in the future as our products continue to be successfully sold in 50 markets around the world.”

Saudi Arabia banned the sale of Julphar's products in 2018 for failing to meet regional standards.

The company had already started supplying the Saudi Arabian market from its new production facility at King Abdullah Economic City at the end of 2019. The plant has an installed annual capacity for one billion tablets and 300 million capsules and 30 million bottles of syrups or suspensions.

Julphar, one of the biggest generic drugs manufacturers in the Middle East and North Africa, had to recall products from cough syrups to mouthwash last year after health authorities in the UAE too raised concerns.

Aside from Saudi Arabia, Julphar's products were suspended from Kuwait and Oman as well.

The company has also replaced several of its top executives including its chief executive and appointed new board members last year as financial stress mounted on the firm.

Earlier in April, shareholders of Ras Al Khaimah-based Julphar approved the company's plan to restructure its capital through a rights issue to improve the financial position and reduce debt.

The capital restructuring involves first reducing the company's share capital by just over Dh503 million by cancelling shares to extinguish accumulated losses, and then raising up to Dh500m through the issuance of new shares with a nominal value of Dh1, the company said.

Set up in 1980, Julphar distributes pharmaceutical products to more than 50 countries on five continents. It has 16 manufacturing facilities in Africa, the Middle East and Asia.