African Medicines Agency set in motion following 15 enactments from member states

GABON – The Republic of Gabon has become the 14th member state to deposit the instrument of ratification of the African Medicines Agency (AMA) to the AU Commission  after endorsing it on the 1st October 2021.

The African Medicines Agency (AMA) is a proposed specialized agency of the African Union (AU) intended to facilitate the harmonization of medical regulation throughout the African Union.

AMA aims to provide support for the improvement of weak regulatory systems. AMA will, among other functions, coordinate and strengthen ongoing initiatives to harmonize medical products regulation and enhance the competence of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) inspectors to do so.

The Agency will further coordinate the collection, management, storage and sharing of information on all medical products including substandard and falsified medical products, with all its States Parties and globally.

To date, eighteen (18) member states have ratified the AMA Treaty and fourteen (14) of these have deposited the instruments of ratification to the Commission. The AMA Treaty will enter into Force 30 days upon the deposit of the 15th instrument of ratification at the Commission.

Pending the deposit of the 15th instrument of ratification, the Commission has invited member states to submit proposals for the hosting of the Africa Medicines Agency Headquarters.

The Commission has also further extended the deadline for submission of interest to host the AMA up to 15th October 2021, as per the ruling of the Permanent Representatives Committee (PRC) on 6th September 2021. The Commission expects to have the established AMA in 2022.

The African Union Commission encourages all its Member States to sign and ratify the Treaty for the establishment of AMA in the interest of public health, safety and security. The Treaty is available for signature at the Headquarters of the Commission in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Gabon’s submission comes shortly after Mauritius deposited their instrument of ratification. Speaking at the occasion, Ambassador Dharmraj Busgeeth noted that Mauritius is keen to see the establishment of AMA as soon as possible, and to contribute to the development of vaccine production facilities on the continent.

AMA will play an important regulatory role, encourage local production of medical products and align regulatory policies on the continent, taking advantage of the opportunities brought about by the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA),” H.E. Amira Elfadil Mohammed, Commissioner for Health, Humanitarian Affairs and Social Development, at the AU Commission, said.

To date, eighteen (18) member states have ratified the AMA Treaty and thirteen (13) of these have deposited the instruments of ratification to the Commission. The AMA Treaty will enter into Force 30 days upon the deposit of the 15th instrument of ratification at the Commission.

Pending the deposit of the 15th instrument of ratification, the Commission has invited member states to submit proposals for the hosting of the Africa Medicines Agency Headquarters. The Commission has also further extended the deadline for submission of interest to host the AMA up to 15th October 2021.

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