Lebanon Businessnews News

Generics represent half of
the pharmaceutical market
Imports surged five percent
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The market share of generic medicines represented 43 percent of the total value of the pharmaceutical market, which reached $1.2 billion last year, according to the Pharmaceuticals Importers Association (LPIA).

Generics represented 57 percent of the total quantity of pharmaceuticals. Generics are imported mainly from Jordan, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Canada, and Austria. Armand Phares, the Chairman of LPIA, said that the re-pricing rule for the originator medicine is limiting the generics ability to compete and increase its market share. Originator medicine is the medicine innovated by the manufacturer.

The pharmaceutical market increased five percent last year compared to 2016. The unit of measurement of the pharmaceutical market is the Net Selling Price to market.

Pharmacies had an $877 million share, (up from $833 million), hospitals $172 million, and public institutions $110 million.

Phares said that modified pricing rules are pushing pharmaceutical prices down. The decision, issued by the Ministry of Public Health in February 2016, obliged manufacturers to update their pricing documents during the first month of the fifth year after the medicine was introduced to the local market. Previously pharmaceutical companies were requested to reduce the price of their medicines at the end of the fifth year after it was introduced. This decision reduced the prices of 913 type of medicine.

According to Customs, Germany is the largest source of pharmaceutical imports ($211 million), followed by France ($160 million), the United States ($142 million), and Switzerland ($91 million).

According to the LPIA, in terms of officially registered products, local pharmaceuticals ranked first, followed by France (ten percent), Germany (ten percent), Jordan (seven percent), and Italy (five percent).

Pharmaceutical exports reached $53 million, down three percent compared to 2016, according to Customs. The top export destination was Iraq ($12.3 million), followed by the UAE ($11 million), Saudi Arabia ($9.8 million), and Kuwait ($5.7 million).
Reported by Rania Ghanem
Date Posted: Mar 16, 2018
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