Trade Affairs

Medicines form a major part of an effective healthcare system. The main objective of such a healthcare system is to provide the public access to medicines that are of good quality, safety and efficacy and that are economically affordable. This is captured clearly in the Kenya National Drug Policy of 2006 and the mission statement of the Pharmacy and Poisons Board.

Access to medicines becomes even more critical given that majority of our population live below poverty line and face serious pandemics such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, drought and famine.

The Minister for Health in consultation with the Pharmacy and Poisons Board is empowered by section 44(1) of the Pharmacy and Poisons Act, Cap 244 of 2002 to make rules under which medicines may be imported into Kenya. By exploiting section 58 (2) of the Industrial Property Act of 2001, the Ministry of Health, through the Pharmacy and Poisons Board, has hereby developed guidelines for parallel importation of patented medicines, medicines registered in Kenya and medicines from authorized sites.

Thus, to procure a cost-effective or less expensive medicine than the one already registered and available in the Kenyan Market, the Registrar may authorize, through a permit the importation of the same medicine manufactured by, or on behalf of the approved manufacturer from any other country and the restrictions imposed by the patent or registration shall not apply.


Parallel Importation of Medicines in Kenya