Wockhardt to develop SEZ near Aurangabad for its global biopharma hub

Wockhardt Ltd has drawn up plans to develop a state-of-the-art pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical manufacturing and research facility at a 107-acre SEZ at Aurangabad, which the Indian pharmaceutical company would first develop.

Wockhardt was one of the earliest companies to set up a manufacturing facility in Aurangabad in 1979 and in 2004 President A P J Abdul Kalam had inaugurated its Biotech Park, among the largest biopharmaceuticals complex in Aurangabad.

Wockhardt, which intends to emerge a major biopharmaceutical company feels its future investments in biotechnology at the proposed SEZ would accelerate its global reach, as over half its sales now come from Europe and the US, while India continues to be its manufacturing and research base.

The proposed SEZ will be spread over 107 hectares of land leased from MIDC at Shendra, for which Wockhardt recently signed a mou with MIDC. The company says would provide employment to an estimated 2000 people. "This SEZ will provide the base for a new thrust in international markets that will drive Wockhardts growth in the coming years," says Habil Khorakiwala, chairman, Wockhardt. "It will make Aurangabad a major hub for pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries."

This would be the first major pharmaceutical and biotechnology SEZ in Maharashtra.

The SEZ will house manufacturing facilities for active pharmaceutical ingredients, biopharmaceuticals, research and development centre, effluent treatment plant, a corporate office, warehouse and a residential and recreational complex.

Wockhardt currently has 10 manufacturing facilities, including one in the UK, most of them certified by international regulatory bodies like the US FDA. The proposed plants at the SEZ will also be built for international regulatory compliance.