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14-05-2019  |  115x
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CPhI expert forecasts ‘huge growth in MENA manufacturing'

Market looks well set for regional boom as second CPhI MEA launches in Dubai

Dubai, 14th May 2019: CPhI Middle East & Africa (CPhI MEA) expert Madhukar Tanna, Chief Executive Officer of Pharmax, a United Arab Emirates (UAE) based branded generic manufacturer, says favourable conditions in the UAE are resulting in a boom of pharmaceutical manufacturing throughout the region. Government incentive schemes to increase domestic production, coupled with a brand friendly environment and rising healthcare needs is fuelling surging demand – with many new companies and plants launching in the last two years alone.

Currently, the UAE imports 90 per cent of medicines, with generics accounting for up to 60 per cent of these imports. However, it has been well-publicised that the UAE has identified pharmaceutical manufacturing as a key growth area, with the number of domestic pharmaceutical companies expected to increase significantly.
Commenting on the MEA market, Tanna said “The picture in the UAE is particularly favourable, as we don’t have a true generics sector – rather just branded generics. Drugs produced by manufacturers for sale in the UAE, whether generic or innovator, are licensed to a specific brand. This ensures the highest quality – for which UAE consumers and insurance companies are willing to pay.. The other aspect is that consumers are also willing to pay a premium for drugs made by trusted brands, meaning that in the last few years we have seen a sudden growth of manufacturers. In addition, beyond the UAE there is of course the option of selling into other parts of the MENA region, providing other high-growth markets.”

Experts believe ahead of the second CPhI MEA – where nearly 4,900 professionals and 294+ exhibiting companies will be in attendance – the opportunities in the region are rapidly opening-up and many international firms are now looking to partner with local manufacturers to bring products to market.

The region, however, does face a number of potential head winds, including a need for further integration across the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) – which despite recent efforts over the last 5-years – still fall short of true mutual recognition among all parties according to Tanna. He believes that we could be set for ‘a period of extended compounded growth if the region’s Governments can align more quickly’.

Another area highlighted for potential future growth are in inhalers and biosimilars – in particular we should expect companies to begin investing in sterile capabilities across the region.

CPhI MEA will take place at the ADNEC Centre, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE), from 16-18 September 2019, attracting leaders and key decision makers to the heart of this new pharma hub. The event will co-locate ICSE, P-MEC, Innopack and FDF, providing the opportunity to meet with regional drug manufacturers, suppliers of pharma ingredients, distributors, finished dose manufacturers, and companies involved in pharma machinery, packaging and contract services.

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