BURLINGTON, Mass., Sept. 9, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Decision Resources, one of the world's leading research and advisory firms for pharmaceutical and healthcare issues, finds that Saudi Arabia's oil-fueled prosperity, growing population, and liberal health spending policies are major drivers of market growth and have generated attractive opportunities for multinational pharmaceutical companies. An expanding network of medical facilities and the requirement for mandatory health insurance have fueled market expansion. The government is also privatizing the healthcare industry and creating more public-private partnership opportunities to spur investment in new medical cities, which will provide improved access to health services.
The Saudi Arabia Market Access Tracker finds that the Saudi government is equally committed to the strict regulation of both the private and public sectors in order to provide health benefits at an optimal cost. Despite ample market opportunities for multinationals, strict registration, pricing, and drug distribution policies present challenges to market entry.
The findings also reveal that a major attraction for multinationals is that the domestic pharmaceutical industry has not kept pace with the needs of the Saudi market, which is highly dependent on imported drugs, both brands and generics. However, government policies to promote the domestic industry as well as continuing cost-containment activities will pose barriers to multinationals interested in this important Middle East market.
As the largest pharmaceutical market of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the Saudi market has both local and regional appeal. "Unified drug registration, pricing, and procurement policies among the member states are steadily molding the GCC region into a harmonized common market, as opposed to the individual markets of the past," said Decision Resources Analyst Gilan Megeed, M.P.H. "Many Saudi regulations and guidelines are modeled after those in the European Union, the World Health Organization, and the International Conference on Harmonization. The GCC common market clearly seeks to emulate the success of the EU common market."
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SOURCE Decision Resources