Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 07/13/2012 -- BMI View: Belgium's rapidly ageing population, traditionally high per capita consumption of medicines and a well-developed healthcare system will combine to continue providing substantial commercial opportunities for pharmaceutical sector players. However, given the need for fiscal austerities in regards to public spending in the face of economic difficulties, the prospects for the placement of expensive patented medicines onto the Belgian market will remain subdued over the short term at least, as the authorities increasingly prioritise the use of cheaper generic products.
Headline Expenditure Projections
- Pharmaceuticals: EUR6.12bn (US$8.51bn) in 2011 to EUR5.96bn (US$7.69bn) in 2012; -2.6% in local currency terms and -9.6% in US dollar terms. Forecast slightly lower than in Q212 on account of new macroeconomic expectations.
- Healthcare: EUR39.00bn (US$54.20bn) in 2011 to EUR40.07bn (US$51.69bn) in 2012; +2.7% in local currency terms and -4.6% in US dollar terms. Historical figures increased on the basis of new data, but the year-on-year (y-o-y) forecast is unchanged from Q212.
- Medical devices: EUR1.67bn (US$2.32bn) in 2011 to EUR1.74bn (US$2.24bn) in 2012; +4.2% in local currency terms and -3.3% in US dollar terms. Forecast unchanged from Q212.
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Risk/Reward Ratings: Belgium scores 66.5 out of 100 in BMI's Q312 Pharmaceutical Risk/Reward Ratings (RRRs), which is higher by 2.3% quarter-on-quarter. However, it now places sixth, down from fifth last quarter, in the Western Europe matrix, having been overtaken by Sweden again. Globally, Belgium is in an improved ninth place out of the 95 markets surveyed by BMI's expanding pharmaceutical universe, although its favourable composite score is a result of its low risks more than its substantial rewards.
Key Trends And Developments
- In March 2012, Belgian biopharmaceutical company Ablynx agreed a two-year extension of the existing five-year research partnership with German pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim for the discovery, development and commercialisation of about 10 different nanobody therapeutics. Under the agreement, extended till September 2014, Ablynx will get EUR6.6mn (US$8.7mn) in additional research funding from Boehringer Ingelheim. The company has already received more than EUR58mn (US$76.7mn) as part of the partnership, which was signed in 2007. Ablynx could receive milestone payments of up to EUR125mn (US$165.5mn), as well as royalties for each nanobody that reaches the market.
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