Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 08/06/2012 -- BMI View: We retain our cautious view of the impact of the political situation in Bahrain on its economy and public spending initiatives, including healthcare. While we envisage the preference for patented drugs to remain in place over the coming decade, epidemiological and demographic pressures will combine to increase the need for cost-containment in regards to public spending. Nevertheless, Bahrain's pharmaceutical market growth is expected to remain ahead of its GDP development, as the country continues to invest heavily in its health infrastructure.
Headline Expenditure Projections
- Pharmaceuticals: BHD91mn (US$240mn) in 2011 to BHD98mn (US$260mn) in 2012; +8.3% in local currency and US dollar terms. Forecast lower from Q212, on account of new historical data.
- Healthcare: BHD433mn (US$1.15bn) in 2011 to BHD475mn (US$1.26bn) in 2012; +9.8% in local currency and US dollar terms. Forecast lower from Q212, on account of new historical data.
- Medical devices: BHD26mn (US$68mn) in 2011 to BHD28mn (US$74mn) in 2012; +8.8% in local currency and US dollar terms. Forecast unchanged from Q212.
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Risk/Reward Rating: In Q312, Bahrain stopped sliding down our proprietary Pharmaceutical Risk/Reward Ratings (RRRs) matrix for the Middle East and Africa (MEA), once again ranking seventh out of the 30 markets surveyed in the region. The country's composite score stands at an unchanged 54.9, supported by its favourable risk profile. However, the score is dragged down by modest industry rewards, which are awarded 40 out of the maximum 100 points, thus standing at one point below the regional average. Globally, Bahrain is 38th out of the 95 markets assessed in total using our RRR model.
Key Trends And Developments
- In May 2012, the CEO of National Health Regulatory Authority (NHRA), Dr Baha Eldin Fateha, was quoted by Gulf Daily News as saying that the government is to impose new legislation for the regulation of alternative medicines 'within weeks', subject to approval. The regulations stipulate that only those physicians licensed to practice homeopathy, ayurveda and Chinese medicine will be allowed to operate, with licences subject to meeting certain requirements. The introduction of the regulations in the previously unregulated alternative medicines sector follows reports of misuse of herbal medicines for the treatment of cancer and diabetes.
BMI Economic View: Bahrain's economic recovery will only gradually gather steam in 2012, with elevated government consumption and an ongoing improvement in the net export position bolstering headline growth at a time when fixed investment activity remains muted. We project the economy expanding 2.5% and 3.4% in real terms in 2012 and 2013, following estimated growth of 1.9% in 2011.
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