SCO showcases first international conference and expo on traditional medicine

Union minister of ayush and ports, shipping and waterways Sarbananda Sonowal inaugurated the first B2B Global Conference & Expo on Traditional Medicine under Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) at Guwahati on Thursday. More than 150 delegates from 17 SCO countries (4 virtually) and partners attended the inaugural ceremony. The minister also inaugurated a four-day Expo on Traditional Medicine in the same premises.

“India has made best use of available natural resources through Ayurveda and other traditional systems of medicine to provide healthcare to people as well as towards achieving the goal of universal health coverage. The Global Center for Traditional Medicine of World health Organisation (WHO-GCTM) being set up at Jamnagar with the support of India will help member countries in taking enabling steps in their respective countries for strengthen education and practices of traditional medicine,” the minister stated in his inaugural address.
The inaugural ceremony was attended by the union minister of state for Ayush and women and child development, Dr Mahendrabhai Munjpara; minister of health of the government of Myanmar, Dr Thet Khaing Win; deputy minister of health, Govt of Maldives, Safiyya Mohamed Saeed and secretary in the ministry of Ayush Vaidya Rajesh Kotecha among others.
“India lays a lot of emphasis on quality assurance of education and practices of Ayurveda, Yoga, Unani, Siddha, Sowa-rigpa and the Homeopathy (Ayush). Many regulatory provisions as well as accreditation mechanism are in place to ensure quality of Ayush products. India has also taken lead to develop country’s “integrative Medicine Policy” to integrate traditional systems of medicine and western medicine, while ensuring their training, research and safety,” minister of state for Ayush and women and child development, Dr Mahendrabhai Munjpara, said.
“In Myanmar traditional medicines have been regarded as an invaluable national heritage, it has a significant role in our culture. With the increasing demand of traditional medicines we are supporting the development of traditional medicines in every aspect,” health minister of Myanmar Dr Thet Khaing Win said.
Deputy health minister of Maldives Safiya Mohamed Saeed talked about how traditional medicines used to be the main source of income for millions, especially for the rural areas in developing countries. She emphasised on need for best practices as currently there is a lack of a legal framework and guidelines to assist the industry.
More than 150 delegates from 17 countries, including India, are participating in this event, which includes high level delegates such as health ministers, official delegates, and foreign buyers from SCO and partner countries. The total 75 foreign officials and business delegates from 13 countries are participating in physical mode. Official delegates from China, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan joint virtually.
The two days conference will witness detailed presentation and deliberations from SCO and partner countries on regulatory framework for traditional medicine products and practices, including pharmacopoeia, quality assurance and research, herbal extracts, nutraceuticals, etc from manufacturers and suppliers and government interventions to promote traditional medicine in them. The conference also will have important sessions like ‘Know your buyer’ and ‘B2B meetings’ for discussing specific product-wise, export and import opportunities and for deeper economic partnerships with increased market access across SCO countries are also planned.
The four-day Expo on traditional medicine is intended to showcase local as well as foreign traditional medicine industries/exporters/importers - their products and services. This expo is aimed at opening up trade opportunities in traditional medicine. The ministry of Ayush institutes/councils have put up stalls in the pavilion to showcase their achievements.