Pfizer is looking to increase its footprint in China by teaming up with Zhejiang Hisun Pharmaceuticals.

The firms have signed a memorandum of understanding about establishing a branded generics joint venture. They will explore a potential collaboration focused on manufacturing cooperation and R&D of off-patent medicines. Both parties could contribute "select existing products and other relevant assets and capabilities to provide a solid platform" for this potential JV.

Founded in 1956, over 40 of Hisun's products have been approved in big markets including the USA, Europe, Korea and Australia and are sold to over 30 countries worldwide.

David Simmons, head of emerging markets and established products at Pfizer,  said the proposed JV demonstrates the company's "commitment to China’s ongoing healthcare reforms". He added that it could be "an important milestone for Pfizer’s efforts to broaden the reach of its world-class healthcare solutions in China, and would also help support Chinese industry".

In China, branded generics account for 60% of the domestic market. Pfizer noted that "with a population exceeding 1.3 billion and rapidly-increasing urbanisation rates, the nation is expected to become the world’s second-largest pharmaceutical market by 2015".