Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 04/10/2014 -- Qatar is in top position among eight countries introducing new technology and practices in their healthcare systems, according to a study published at the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH). Experts assessed the gap between the perceived requirements for the dissemination of information and the reality in each country: only in Qatar did the reality match the experts' ratings. Qatar's healthcare system is set for a major revamp in the next few years. The whole healthcare system is expected to develop rapidly, measured by budget and the number of facilities, and see significant upgrades in terms of quality and services to patients. Nonetheless, there are several risks to our outlook for Qatar's pharmaceutical market. To the downside these include weaker-than-projected growth in the oil and gas sector, restricting the government's expansionary fiscal stance, delays to large-scale healthcare infrastructure projects and a widespread preference for Arab medical professionals over highly skilled expatriates. Upside risks include higher-than-expected private consumption on the back of a larger public wage bill and greater influx of foreign workers in preparation for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
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Headline Expenditure Projections
- Pharmaceuticals: QAR1.63bn (US$449mn) in 2013 to QAR1.82bn (US$499mn) in 2014; +11.3% in local currency and 11.2% in US dollar terms. Forecast revised slightly downwards from Q114 due to macroeconomic modifications.
- Healthcare: QAR15.30bn (US$4.20bn) in 2013 to QAR17.01bn (US$4.67bn) in 2014; +11.2% in both local currency and US dollar terms. Forecast revised slightly upwards due to macroeconomic modifications.
Risk/Reward Rating: Qatar's risks are particularly low in comparison with the rest of the MEA region, although its potential rewards are dampened by the small market size. Nevertheless, Qatar's high level of urbanisation, rapid population growth and rising prevalence of chronic lifestyle diseases creates an environment in which there is strong potential for market growth. On account of shifts within BMI's Pharmaceutical Risk/Reward Rating Index for the Middle East and Africa matrix, in Q214, Qatar has moved up again one position in the MEA matrix to reclaim sixth place with the country's scores higher this quarter scoring 53.3 out of 100.
Key Trends And Developments
In February 2014, the government of Qatar plans to invest up to QAR747bn (US$205bn) in infrastructure projects between 2013 and 2018, according to Yusuf Saeed, acting chief of Qatar National Bank (Reuters). The move is aimed at ramping up the economy by 2022, when the Gulf state is scheduled to host the FIFA World Cup.
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