Tibetan medicine posts 200 mln dollars in output value

2015-12-21 09:50:00 | From:Xinhua

The total output value of traditional Tibetan medicine has topped 1.3 billion yuan (201 million U.S. dollars), thanks to growing demand across China for the ancient herbal therapy.

There are 18 pharmaceutical companies in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, including two public companies, Tibet's regional health commission said Tuesday.

The companies have all been awarded the certificate of Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) for Pharmaceutical Products, the commission said in a report submitted to a meeting on the development of Tibetan medicine in Lhasa Tuesday.

The report cited the earnings of Qizheng Tibetan Medicine Co. Ltd, a leading brand famous for plasters and ointments for rheumatism pain relief.

Qizheng reported 950 million yuan (147 million U.S. dollars) in sales revenue last year and its net profits totaled 238 million yuan (36.84 million U.S. dollars), according to its annual report.

The company has sold traditional Tibetan medicine to more than 20,000 medical institutions and at least 22,000 drugstores in China, it said.

"Tibetan medicine contains rare herbs that grow only at high altitudes and with adequate exposure to the sun," said Nyima Tsering, president of the Lhasa-based Tibet College of Tibetan Medicine.

He said many of the traditional therapies have proven effective in treating chronic and complicated diseases.

"Ancient Tibetan medical practices such as bloodletting and herbal baths, for example, are effective in easing rheumatoid arthritis, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases, as well as chronic digestive system illnesses."

As a result of its effects, Tibetan medicine has found favor among doctors and patients in many other parts of China.

One of Lhasa's largest drugstores near the Potala Palace is always crowded with customers, including tourists from China's interior provinces. "Tourists from interior Chinese regions make up 15 to 20 percent of our total customers," said store manager Ma Shaobu.

Among the best-selling products are Qizheng plasters for rheumatism and pills for stroke, he said.

Tibetan medicine, known as "Sowa Rigpa" in Tibetan, is at least 2,300 years old. It has absorbed the influences of traditional Chinese, Indian and Arab medicine and is mainly practiced in Tibet and the Himalayan region.

Tibetan medicine uses herbs, minerals and sometimes insects and animal parts. It was put on the list of China's national intangible cultural heritage in 2006.

Editor: Ellen Liu

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