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Nantong stays green with biomedicine

By Hu Xiaoyu chinadaily.com.cn Updated: 2019-03-28


Employees photographed at work in a pharmaceutical plant in Nantong, East China’s Jiangsu province, on Feb 12. [Photo/IC]

In recent years, authorities in the city of Nantong, Jiangsu province have been trying to identify the most promising industries to grow the local economy, while at the same time ensuring that they have a minimal impact on the environment. 

Biomedicine is set to be one of those industries. 

Nantong plans to focus on developing the industry, as it represents a good opportunity to promote growth without damaging the environment, according to information released at an industrial forum held in the city from March 23 to 24.

The local government is confident that the industry will grow quickly in Nantong, with annual sales revenues forecast to surpass 80 billion yuan ($11.92 billion) by 2022.

At present, Nantong is home to 64 licensed pharmaceutical companies, with 46 passing the country’s GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) certification and 11 holding official recognition from international organizations, such as the World Health Organization (WHO).

The companies mainly deal with biotech medicines, patented traditional Chinese medicines, pharmaceutical chemicals, medical equipment and biomedical materials.

The total output value of those above designated size reached nearly 45 billion yuan in 2018, placing Nantong sixth among cities in Jiangsu province.

According to officials at the local market regulation department, the city plans to focus more on the development of biosynthesis, biological diagnosis and biogenetic technologies in the future.

As a coastal city in East China, Nantong will also fully utilize its ocean resources to accelerate the development of the extraction of marine organisms, expanding the industrial chain to lucrative health products and cosmetics. 

Thanks to its geological advantages and solid industrial foundation, the city has attracted investment from several international pharmaceutical groups, such as Merck KGaA and WuXi Apptec Co, in recent years, improving innovation and R&D capability in the area.

And with policy support and a solid industrial base, it seems likely that Nantong will soon be known as a center for biomedicine.