There’s something about an anniversary that inspires me to look to the future as well as appreciate the past, especially at the start of a new year. As we mark the anniversary of the 10th year of USP-China, the future and the past offer a great deal to appreciate.
In mid-September, I had the pleasure of attending two events in China to mark this milestone. On September 15, we held a celebration in Shanghai with USP-China staff, government officials, and representatives from industry and other local partners. On September 17-19, USP partnered with the Chinese Pharmacopeia (ChP) to co-host the 9th ChP-USP Joint Forum in Beijing. Over the years, this forum has become a leading event on drug standards, and USP and ChP were joined by leaders from the CFDA, Chinese government, and over 500 representatives from industry and other sectors.
Appreciating the past 10 years
Our collaborations in China began 20 years ago, well before we opened our laboratory there. Establishing our center in China was a significant undertaking – and clearly recognized the importance of China in the world’s supply of medicines, as the largest supplier of active pharmaceutical ingredients and one of the largest prescription drug markets in the world. We felt it was important to take this step because it was critical to USP’s work to improve public health and develop quality standards. We cannot achieve our vision of a healthier world on our own – so are committed to working with partners throughout industry, science and healthcare, from across the globe to make this bold vision a reality.
Those attending the event wrote messages on small stones to mark the 10th anniversary of USP-China.
During these past 10 years, USP-China has grown into a substantial partner with China’s government and pharmaceutical industry. In fact, we expanded and relocated our facility in 2014, with strong support of the local government. China’s support – recognizing USP-China as a Technology Advanced Service Enterprise, a Foreign-Invested Research and Development Center, a Pilot Bonded R&D Enterprise, and an Outstanding Enterprise in the Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone – have helped us do our important work to support quality medicines.
Having a facility in China also has enabled new and stronger partnerships with industry, including 84 Chinese pharmaceutical manufacturers who have contributed 174 monographs to support the development of new quality standards in USP-NF. Over the past decade, we have also supplemented our physical presence in China by hosting more than 200 forums and educational programs that were attended by nearly 9,000 participants.
Our staff in China is a key part of our success. Their passion for USP’s mission and vision always is evident, and I always look forward to our meetings and discussions when I visit China.
Looking to the future
We have a vibrant vision for USP’s future in China. This includes continuing our close partnerships with the Chinese government as we work towards common goals for medicines quality, particularly with the CFDA, including ChP and China’s National Institutes for Food and Drug Control (NIFDC). We also are committed to strengthening our partnerships with industry and with the many talented scientists and healthcare providers who volunteer for our Expert Committees.
There are so many opportunities for our work together to increase availability of quality medicines – from our role as a Center of Excellence for APEC in the area of global medical product quality and pharmaceutical supply chain security… to our scientific collaborations… to our international discussions. These partnerships contribute to efforts to control substandard and falsified medicines, and help address the growth of antimicrobial resistance. We look forward to building on these powerful and productive partnerships to improve public health both today and into the future.