Pfizer closes ‘not viable’ plants in India

By Maggie Lynch

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/Endopack)
(Image: Getty/Endopack)

Related tags: Pfizer, India, Antibiotics

Pfizer has announced the closing of two of its India-based plants after product demand declines.

Pfizer will shut down two of its plants, its Aurangabad, Maharashtra facility, and one in

Irungattukottai. Together, the two sites employ approximately 1,700 people.

Pfizer stated that the closures will not impact its remaining sites in India and announced it will expand operations at its Vizag site.

“The Vizag site is now expanded into a global Terminally Sterilized Manufacturing Center of Excellence. It will cater to export markets,”​ Pfizer said in a statement.

Pfizer added that it has conducted a thorough evaluation of the closing sites and concluded that due to the “very significant long-term loss of product demand, manufacturing at these sites is not viable.”

Both sites will immediately stop manufacturing and close as soon as possible in 2019, although exact timing has not yet been determined.

The Irungattukottai site, formerly owned by Hospira until Pfizer’s acquisition, employs 1,000 individuals and Aurangabad approximately 700. The Aurangabad facility manufactures penicillin and penem active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). While the Irungattukottai facility manufactures generic injectable antibiotics.

Pfizer stated that neither of the sites manufacture products for the Indian market. The company also explained that it aims to continue its presence in India.

The Irungattukottai site had previously encountered difficulties, when it was stripped of its good manufacturing practice​ (GMP) certification by the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency in 2016, after inspectors noted sterility problems in production areas.

The company also shut down its Mumbai facility​ in 2015, after no active production at the plant for two years.

Pfizer operates 58 manufacturing plants globally with over 30,000 employees. 

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