GlaxoSmithKline is selling its Opiates business in Australia to Indian drugs giant Sun Pharmaceutical for an undisclosed amount.

GSK Opiates - including related manufacturing sites in Latrobe, Tasmania, and Port Fairy, Victoria, and its portfolio of poppy-derived opiate products for use in analgesics - will be transferred to a subsidiary of Sun Pharma, probably sometime in August.

The transaction, which is still subject to various closing conditions and approvals, will allow GSK to simplify its operations in Australia and sharpen focus on delivering its innovative product portfolio, a central vein of its growth strategy in the country.

“The Opiates business has been an important part of our Australian business for many years, but as our portfolio transitions, we believe now is the right time to hand this business over to someone else,” noted Steve Morris, General Manager, GSK Opiates.