Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Herbal medicine market worth Tk 330cr a year: research

Bangladesh has a market of traditional and herbal products worth Tk 330 crore a year and the country can tap the potentials of the fast-growing global market of herbal medicine, which the World Health Organisation forecasts will reach $3 trillion by 2020, researches
said at a conference in Khulna on Saturday.They said there were at least 550 medicinal plants in Bangladesh and 300 among them were being used for preparing traditional medicines.
The findings of a collaborative research done jointly by the Department of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering at Khulna University and the Department of Pharmacy at the University of Wolverhampton, UK on the bioprospecting potentials of the plants from the world’s largest mangrove forest, the Sundarbans, was shared at the conference titled ‘Updates on Natural Products in Medicine and Health Care Systems’.
Mohammad Fayek Uzzaman, vice-chancellor of Khulna University inaugurated the conference attended by scientists from the UK, India and Bangladesh.
‘The main objectives of the conference are to see and update the knowledge on the contributions of natural products, such as plants from the Sundarbans for example, to medicine and healthcare,’ said Satyajit D Sarker of the University of Wolverhampton.
He stressed mainstreaming traditional medicine into public healthcare to achieve the objective of improved access to healthcare facilities as it has diversity, flexibility, easy accessibility and broad acceptance in the developing countries, increasing popularity in the developed ones, relatively low cost, low levels of technological input, relatively fewer side effects and growing economic importance.
The convener of the conference, Morsaline Billah of Khulna University, said identifying recent advances in analytical techniques for research of natural products and public perception and uses of natural products-based traditional medicine were the focus of the papers presented at the conference.
‘In Bangladesh, if we consider traditional medical knowledge and home remedies as a baseline, natural products and traditional medicine is being used possibly by 80 per cent of our population,’ said ABM Faroque, president of Bangladesh Pharmaceutical Society .
He said natural compounds were contributing towards medicine and healthcare systems and their uses were not really declining.
Sitesh Chandra Bachar of Dhaka University said the government should provide more funds and other forms of support for the development of the traditional systems of medical care since these were popular for effectiveness of treatment and relatively safe.
WHO forecasts the global market will be worth $3 trillion in 2020 and $5 trillion in 2050, he added.

-With New Age input

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