The Azerbaijani-Russian joint pharmaceutical plant will come to full production capacity in 2020, said Azerbaijan’s Economy Minister Shahin Mustafayev.

He made the remarks Nov. 2 during the plant’s groundbreaking ceremony in the Pirallahi Industrial Park.

This is Azerbaijan’s first pharmaceutical plant, said the minister, adding that a 10-percent share in the joint venture will be owned by Azerbaijan Investment Company (AIC), a 45-percent share – by Russia’s R-Pharm company and a 45-percent share – by Azerbaijan’s Vita-A LLC.

Mustafayev noted $74 million will be invested in the plant’s construction.

“The project will be implemented in stages,” he said.

The work on infrastructure will start late 2016, and the construction of production sites will begin in 2017, he added.

“Azerbaijan has not been engaged in the production of medicines, therefore, this is a new sphere for us,” said Mustafayev. “Today’s event is very significant, both in terms of reducing the import and development of non-oil sector, and the economy’s diversification.”

A groundbreaking ceremony for the Azerbaijani-Russian joint pharmaceutical plant Hayat Pharm was held in Azerbaijan’s Pirallahi industrial park on Nov. 2.

Russia’s R-Pharm, Azerbaijan Investment Company (AIC) and Azerbaijan’s Vita-A LLC are the plant’s shareholders.

Hayat Pharm will produce medicines of various pharmaceutical groups, including cancer, antifungal, antiemetic, antiviral and other drugs.

The plant’s capacity will be 22.5 million packages, or 500 million pills and capsules.