Belgian public development aid will better monitor the quality of pharmaceutical products in developing countries

The Belgian Development Cooperation will better monitor the quality of pharmaceutical products in developing countries. For this purpose, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Development Cooperation Alexander De Croo signed today, together with NGOs and other actors of the Belgian Official Development Aid (ODA), a declaration of commitment. About a fourth of medicines are estimated to be of bad quality in countries where the Belgian Development Cooperation is active. “This has disastrous consequences for the health of people who are often already vulnerable”, underlines Minister De Croo.

The access to quality pharmaceutical products for all is a priority of the Belgian Development Cooperation: 22% of Belgium’s ODA in the health sector are allocated to the purchase of medicines, which underlines the importance of this agreement. This commitment makes also part of the implementation of the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.

Using quality pharmaceutical products seems granted, but it is not. In the environment in which the Belgian Development Cooperation operates, it is estimated that more than a fourth of pharmaceutical products are of bad quality” confirms Alexander De Croo.

The Belgian initiative will protect the health of patients who benefit from programmes financed by the Belgian Development Cooperation. In the longer term, it could reduce the continuing progression of resistance to antimicrobials. It could also have an impact on the quality of pharmaceutical products circulating in the global pharmaceutical market.

With this commitment, Belgium becomes the first bilateral donor and the first Member State of the European Union to propose a response to the question of the quality of pharmaceutical products. Our country’s good practices are looked at as being both innovative and inspiring by other EU Member States.

The declaration of commitment was signed by Minister De Croo, together with:

  • L’Association pour la Promotion de l'Education et de la Formation à l'Etranger
  • L’Académie de Recherche et d'Enseignement supérieur
  • Artsen Zonder Vakantie Médecins Sans Vacances
  • La Société belge d'Investissement pour les Pays en Développement
  • Benelux Afro Center
  • La Chaine de l’Espoir Belgique
  • La Croix-Rouge de Belgique Communauté francophone
  • La Coopération Technique Belge
  • Damiaanactie Action Damien
  • Handicap International
  • L'Institut de Médecine Tropicale d’Anvers
  • Lumière pour le Monde
  • Médecins du Monde Dokters van de Wereld
  • Oxfam Solidarité
  • Memisa Belgique Memisa België
  • Vlaamse Interuniversitaire Raad
  • Vétérinaires Sans Frontières Dierenartsen Zonder Grenzen
  • Wereldsolidariteit Solidarité Mondiale & Mutualités Chrétiennes