FDA COLLABORATES WITH MALTESE DELEGATION TO ENHANCE CAPACITY BUILDING
A Maltese delegation on Tuesday 25th June, 2019 met with Strategic Management Members of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) at the Authority’s headquarters in Accra for discussion on collaboration between the two parties in their areas of operation.
According to the Maltese delegation, since Brexit is around the corner, Ghana would need a new partner in the European Union (EU) and Malta is ready to be Ghana’s gateway to the EU. They further indicated that they are in Ghana to strengthen the ties between the two countries following the five memorandum of understanding signed by Ghana and Malta to govern partnerships. “We are committed to take this relationship to a higher level” the leader of the delegation, Jean Claude Galea Mallia, Maltese High Commissioner to Ghana stated.
Specific areas identified by the delegation for further consideration were support for SMEs and start-ups in Ghana, postgraduate and doctorate scholarships to Pharmacists to study in Malta, registration of Ghana’s pharmaceutical product in Malta for easy access to the European and other markets, amongst others.
The delegation mentioned that there are five (5) scholarships that their government gives every year. Three of the scholarships are Commonwealth related and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs also offers scholarships to Ghanaians. This according to the delegation would be an area that could be beneficial to the Authority.
Welcoming the team from Malta, the CEO of the FDA, Mrs. Delese A. A. Darko took them through how the Authority has evolved and some of the areas that they could collaborate. “We started as Pharmacy Board then to Food and Drugs Board and now Food and Drugs Authority. As an Authority, our mandate has been widened; we regulate drugs, food, household chemicals, medical devices, cosmetics, tobacco and tobacco products, blood and blood products” Mrs. Darko mentioned.
Mrs. Darko revealed that capacity building would be an area that the FDA would “grab most. It would be a very beneficial area for this collaboration. We keep building capacity for ourselves. We send staff for Masters programmes and other short courses so capacity building would be a great area of this collaboration.”
Adding to the possible areas of collaboration, Mrs. Darko stressed that “the FDA is also ready to offer support to Malta since it is an ISO 9001:2015 certified agency and the Clinical Trails Department, Drug Evaluation and Registration and Safety Monitoring Departments of the Authority are designated by NEPAD as Regional Center of Regulatory Excellence (RCORE) for providing training and mentorship for African Regulators. “You can also send people to us to train and mentor” she added.
Mrs. Darko further added that the FDA can also be of help in the training of Regulators of Malta involved in the regulation of medical devices since this is a new area in product regulation in Malta.
The delegation mentioned that, the meeting was to get a fair idea of the operations of the Authority and possible areas of collaboration.
The Maltese delegation who visited the FDA were Michael Grech, Director of Malta Enterprise, Cain Grech, Coordinator, Business Development Malta’s Advisor to the CEO of Malta Enterprise, Anton Buttigieg, CEO of Trade Malta, Ronald Micallef, Ambassador to African Union at Malta’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade Promotion, Annalise Attard, Director, Scientific and Regulatory Operations of Malta’s Medicines Authority and Mark Carauna Arena, Head of Ports Operations at Transport Malta.