Strengthening APIs and Intermediates Supply Chains Against Crises

The pandemic has placed severe pressure on global public health systems, causing unexpected changes in the demand for common and rare medications. This shift has introduced new uncertainties in the manufacturing and distribution of pharmaceutical products with limited sources, particularly in Asia. The market for APIs and intermediates has shown a worldwide shortage of essential medicines.

A supply chain crisis typically arises when product supply fails to meet the demand within a country. In recent years, the API supply chain has become increasingly globalized, coupled with a trend towards geographical concentration in manufacturing finished pharmaceutical products and APIs.

This blog explores the challenges and strategies to strengthen APIs and intermediates supply against future crises.

Challenges in the API and intermediate supply chain

Amidst the ongoing shifts in manufacturing and supply chain dynamics for various reasons, there are several complex causes of disruptions in the supply chain, such as:

Production concentration

A notable portion of API and investment manufacturing is intensive in limited countries like India and China. This dependency can lead to failure if production is disrupted in these regions.

Geopolitical tensions

Exhausted relations between countries can disturb trade flows and affect the availability of essential drug supplies.

Natural disasters

Disasters like earthquakes, pandemics, and floods can disturb countries’ production and distribution networks and raise inflation.

Strategies to strengthen the API and intermediate supply chain against crises:

Several strategies can be accomplished to reinforce the resilience of the API and intermediate supply chains.

Relying on multiple suppliers will be one of the effective strategies to execute their supply chain management risk.

Prolixity in supply chains
Raising buffer stocks and setting up alternate sourcing options help maintain the flow during the disruptions.

Collaborations and communications
Enhanced communication between stakeholders and businesses facilitates quicker responses and rapid recovery during crises.

Improved visibility
Real-time monitoring tools will enhance transparency throughout the API supply and manufacturing system.

Key takeaways

  • Any disturbance occurring at any point within the manufacturing supply chain, from raw materials procurement to the sale of finished products, can lead to heightened expenses and delayed deliveries.
  • Through strategic supply chain management, businesses can reduce risks and prepare for disruptions, particularly during external breakdowns and sudden shifts in market trends.
  • A robust supply chain enables manufacturers to enhance customer satisfaction by leveraging advanced technologies and optimizing operational processes.


Numerous companies have inadvertently increased their fragility to mitigate supply chain risks. Implementing strategies such as optimizing processes and adopting sustainable practices can effectively assist these companies. Moreover, reinforcing supply chains allows businesses to capitalize on advantages during inevitable disruptions. Continuous supply chain enhancement remains essential, necessitating ongoing monitoring to ensure enterprises stay adaptable to evolving supply chain demands.

Global Pharma Tek is a prominent pharmaceutical conglomerate that provides extensive services to the industry. Our capabilities span workforce solutions, pharmaceutical raw materials distribution, and drug development. We offer comprehensive support across the entire drug development lifecycle, encompassing clinical research, contract research, development and manufacturing, and pharmaceutical materials sourcing.

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