Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/28/2014 -- BMI View: A deteriorating macroeconomic outlook for the country in 2013 and 2014 will see the consumption of medicines and healthcare services slow in the short-term. Additionally, ongoing depreciation of the South African Rand against hard currencies will have a negative impact on the volume of medicines in circulation. Nevertheless, we believe favourable demographics and the large market size will continue to attract foreign drugmakers in the medium to long term.
Headline Expenditure Projections
- Pharmaceuticals: ZAR30.46bn (US$3.71bn) in 2012 to ZAR34.01bn (US$3.52bn) in 2013; +11.7% in local currency terms and -5.1 % in US dollar terms. Forecast slightly lower than Q413 based on revisions to macroeconomic data.
- Healthcare: ZAR277.78bn (US$33.85bn) in 2012 to ZAR304.83bn (US$31.56bn) in 2013; +9.7% in local currency terms and -6.8% in US dollar terms. Forecast broadly in line with Q413.
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Despite the country's low risk profile being more favourable than its rewards profile, South Africa has strong longer-term commercial potential because of its sizeable population and economic development. South Africa is one of the most promising markets in the entire MEA region. In Q114, South Africa maintained its score of 56 out of 100 and its 5th position in the matrix.
In November 2013, South African telecoms company MTN launched the Hello Doctor mobile application in South Africa. The application aims to provide technology-based solutions, and has been developed to work in coordination with local general practitioners. Its intention is to ensure that patients get correct medical information before they visit a doctor. Hello Doctor is a service that can be downloaded free-ofcharge and runs on both smartphones such as iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Nokia & HTML5 and certain feature phones. The app will be phased in across all MTN markets in the coming 18 months, beginning with South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, Ghana, Uganda, Cameroon and Rwanda.
In November 2013, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) announced that it will sell one-third of its shareholding in Aspen Pharmacare for US$684mn (ZAR7bn), according to Business Day Live. Following settlement of the sale, GSK will hold 56.5mn ordinary shares in Aspen, representing 12.4% of the issued share capital, remaining a key shareholder.
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