22 Jan 2019

Accra: the rise of counterfeit pharmaceuticals

This seminar takes a critical look at the rise of counterfeit medicines in Africa, with a focus on Ghana.

The manufacture and proliferation of counterfeit drugs for malaria, typhoid, HIV, and other killer diseases has increased the risks of people dying from these diseases. The threat posed by counterfeit medicines disproportionately affects developing countries, and West African countries are some of the hardest hit in the world.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), over 800 000 otherwise avoidable deaths occur every year, as people take fake medicines. These ‘drugs’ are less expensive and more accessible than the genuine thing.

In 2013, the European Union ranked Ghana as the sixth largest producer of fake drugs in the world. Estimated to worth between US$200 billion and US$400 billion annually, the illegal trade in counterfeit medicines is drives a lucrative criminal economy. Accounting for as much as 30% of the market in Africa, counterfeit pharmaceuticals weaken the efforts of governments, drug companies and civil society to improve access to medication.

A new ENACT policy brief, titled The Rise of Counterfeit Pharmaceuticals in Africa will be launched at this seminar, with a focus on implications for Ghana and West Africa.


Eric Pelser, ENACT Programme Head, Institute for Security Studies


  • Keynote address by Ghana Minister of Health, Hon. Kwaku Agyeman-Manu (TBC)
  • Robin Cartwright, Senior Fellow, Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime
  • Dr Kwesi Aning, Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre 
  • Kofi Bentil, IMANI Center of Policy and Education
  • Maria-Goretti Loglo, African consultant for the International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC)

Enquiries: Martin Ewi – mewi@issafrica.org

Photo © NIAID / Flickr 

Event Details

Date: 2019-01-22

Time: 06:30 to 12:00

Venue: Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC), Accra, Ghana

RSVP: Monique de Graaff – mdegraaff@issafrica.org

Ghana Institute for Security Studies Nigeria
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ENACT is funded by the European Union
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ENACT is implemented by the Institute for Security Studies in partnership with
INTERPOL and the Global Initiative against Transnational Organized Crime.