Medical companies have been using the China International Import Expo (CIIE) as a platform to introduce new drugs and treatment solutions to Chinese consumers. Pharmaceutical firm GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) said the products it showcased last year have all been commercialized in China.
This year, the company is presenting Shingrix, a vaccine for shingles, a skin disease, that received fast-track approval in China.
In 2015, China's State Council kicked off a reform over drugs and medical equipment. Over the past five years, the pharmaceutical industry in China has gone through rapid changes, especially in the speed of new drug approvals. Since 2016, over 40 new drugs got approved in China. In 2019, more drugs were approved in China than in the United States.
This year, there is a new section at the CIIE on public health and epidemic prevention. GSK is joining hands with several institutions in developing a COVID-19 vaccine.
There are strict health codes that all participants should abide by at this year's CIIE: mandatory face masks, temperature checks at major entry points, and everyone who enters here has to have been tested for COVID-19.