By Lin Yang
VOA News
May 20, 2020

WASHINGTON - In early May, U.S. President Donald Trump was asked during a Fox News virtual town hall when the country would no longer be dependent on foreign pharmaceutical manufacturers for 94% of antibiotics used in this country.

“I think we will have it done within two years,” Trump answered. “Everybody makes our drugs, except us.”

Trump may have been overly optimistic, but he was reflecting a mounting concern among Americans that they are overly dependent on overseas or offshore companies for most of their pharmaceutical drug needs.

The spread of COVID-19 and the unprecedented pressure it has placed on the U.S. health care system highlights America’s strategic dependence on foreign-based pharmaceutical supply manufacturers, particularly in China.

China holds a key position in the global active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) industry, which produces ingredients used in the manufacturing of drugs, and in the production of protective gear such as thermometers, PPEs and masks.

The outbreak of the coronavirus in Wuhan, China, early this year prompted anxiety among industry experts who worried that a shortage of active pharmaceutical ingredients would disrupt pharmaceutical supply chains and create severe drug shortages in the U.S…….

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