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Hong Kong and Mainland sign co-operation agreement on research for Chinese medicine testing and standards (with photos)

     The Department of Health (DH) of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and the Office of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Affairs of the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) today (June 15) signed a co-operation agreement in Beijing on research for testing and standards of Chinese medicines. The agreement strengthens the exchange and collaboration between the two sides in the field of scientific research of Chinese medicines and is an important milestone in the collaboration between the regulatory authorities of the two places towards the internationalisation of Chinese medicines.

     The co-operation agreement was jointly signed by the Director of Health, Dr Constance Chan, and the Director of the Office of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan Affairs of the CFDA, Mr Yuan Lin.

     Speaking at the signing ceremony, Dr Chan said that Hong Kong and the Mainland have established a solid foundation of co-operation and exchange since the DH and the CFDA jointly signed the first agreement related to control of drugs and medical devices in 2010. The newly signed co-operation agreement not only enables closer co-operation between both sides in developing quality and safety standards for Chinese Materia Medica, but also further enhances the exchange of expertise and promotes the development of Chinese medicine in both places.
     According to the co-operation agreement, exchanges in the area of developing standards for Chinese Materia Medica, including research and development of quality and safety standards for Chinese Materia Medica and Chinese medicines decoction pieces, as well as testing on the quality and safety of Chinese medicines and relevant risk control strategies, will be further enhanced through activities such as meetings of experts, symposiums and training between both places.

     With the support and participation of the National Institutes for Food and Drug Control (NIFDC), a subordinate agency of the CFDA, the DH has completed the formulation of standards for 21 commonly used Chinese herbs in Hong Kong. Of these, the standards for seven commonly used Chinese herbs were announced in the Hong Kong Chinese Materia Medica Standards last year while those of the remaining 14 will be announced next year. In addition, the NIFDC will become one of the major working partners and provide technical support for the future Chinese Medicine Testing Centre under the management of the DH.

     The Chief Executive announced in the 2015 Policy Address the development of a testing centre for Chinese medicines, which will specialise in the testing of and scientific research on Chinese medicine with a view to setting reference standards for the safety, quality and testing methods of Chinese medicine. The testing centre will also help promote the Hong Kong Chinese Materia Medica Standards and the reference standards for testing Chinese medicine as authoritative international benchmarks to pave the way for the internationalisation of Hong Kong's Chinese medicine industry.

Ends/Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Issued at HKT 18:23


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