Brazil Offers To Provide Technology, Training for Proposed Pharmaceutical Plant To Produce HIV/AIDS, Malaria Drugs in Mozambique
Brazil has prepared a study to determine the feasibility of constructing a $23 million pharmaceutical plant in Mozambique to produce drugs for HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases, an unnamed spokesperson for Brazil's Ministry of Health said on Tuesday, Reuters reports. The spokesperson also said that Brazil has offered to provide technology, training and quality monitoring for the plant.
The offer to study the possibility of building the plant initially was raised in 2003 by Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who said he wanted drugs from the plant to be available to other African countries. The Brazilian ambassador to Mozambique Leda Lucia Camargo recently presented the study to Mozambique's government, Reuters reports.
Although previous reports indicated that Brazil offered to build the facility, the country has only carried out a study and had not offered to fund the plant, according to the spokesperson. "Brazil has no commitment to finance the construction," the spokesperson said, adding that France, Germany and Italy have expressed interest in helping to fund the plant, but a decision has not been made.
Mozambique's Health Minister Ivo Garrido said the government will decide next month whether to approve the Brazilian proposal. "We will have to study it very carefully," he said. About 1.6 million people are living with HIV in Mozambique, which has a population of 18 million people. Only a small number of people in need of antiretrovirals have access to the drugs, most of which are imported from India, according to Reuters (Reuters, 5/29).