BMI View: South Korea will remain an important market for innovative pharmaceutical firms in the Asia Pacific. While the country's designation as a 'Watch List' country in PhRMA's 2016 submission highlights concerns over the regulatory environment, this is an improvement from 2015 and reflects ongoing progress. Consequently, we maintain our outlook that multinational pharmaceutical investments into the country will remain strong, with strong upside risks from the possible participation of South Korea in the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal.
Headline Expenditure Projections
Pharmaceuticals: KRW17,117.1bn (USD15.1bn) in 2015 to KRW17,693.8bn (USD14.1bn) in 2016; +3.4% in local currency terms and -6.8% in US dollar terms. Forecast in USD terms is influenced by exchange rate.
Healthcare: KRW113,990.2bn (USD100.8bn) in 2015 to KRW120,624.8bn (USD96.1bn) in 2016; +5.8% in local currency terms and -4.6% in US dollar terms. Forecast in USD terms is influenced by exchange rate.
|f = BMI forecast. Source: WHO, National Sources, BMI|
|Pharmaceutical sales, USDbn||15.754||15.130||14.099||14.602||15.590||16.836||18.333|
|Pharmaceutical sales, % of GDP||1.12||1.12||1.11||1.09||1.07||1.05||1.03|
|Pharmaceutical sales, % of health expenditure||15.3||15.0||14.7||14.3||14.0||13.8||13.5|
|Health spending, USDbn||102.757||100.757||96.115||101.780||110.989||122.291||135.688|
In Q216, South Korea ranks third out of the 19 countries surveyed in the Asia Pacific region. South Korea's score for its Rewards variable is high, indicating the country's favourable longer-term standing in terms of its pharmaceutical market development. However, we note Risks - particularly in relation to pharmaceutical pricing and reimbursement - will remain present, especially as the population ages and requires more public sector resources.
In February 2016, LG Life Sciences received the World Health Organization's prequalification approval for its 5-in-1 vaccine, Eupenta , which is used in the prevention of diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis B and meningitis.
In the same month, the Korea International Cooperation Agency announced that it open a new health centre in Peru to provide medical assistance.
In January 2016, the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety announced that it will shorten the review process of biologics for rare diseases so that these drugs can be approved for sales overseas in a shorter timeframe.
BMI Economic View: South Korea's stimulus package aimed at supporting growth by aiding exports and boosting domestic spending will have a limited effect on the country's growth, which will continue to be hampered by stiff export headwinds as well as high levels of household debt. With the stimulus mostly coming from policy bank lending, it is unlikely to have a significant impact on the government's 2016 fiscal deficit. However, we expect the central bank to cut interest rates to lend support to the government's initiatives, and now forecast a 25bps cut to 1.25% over the coming months.
BMI Political View: Although the US and South Korea are likely to establish a working group to explore the deployment of the THAAD missile defence system in the latter country, Seoul is likely to postpone the actual introduction of THAAD, owing to Chinese opposition and concerns about a regional arms race. With parliamentary elections due on April 13, conservative South Korean politicians are likely talking up THAAD to bolster their support.
The South Korea Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Report features BMI Research's forecasts for drugs and healthcare expenditure and imports and exports, focusing on the growth outlook for the prescription, OTC, patented drugs and generics market segments.
BMI's South Korea Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Report provides industry professionals, strategists, company executives, investors, analysts and sales/marketing heads with independent forecasts and competitive intelligence on the South Korea pharmaceutical and healthcare industry.
- Benchmark BMI's pharmaceutical and healthcare market forecasts for South Korea, to test other views - a key input for successful budgeting and strategic business planning in the Korean pharmaceutical and healthcare market.
- Target business opportunities and risks in the Korean pharmaceutical and healthcare sector through our reviews of latest industry trends, regulatory changes and major deals, projects and investments in South Korea.
- Assess the activities, strategy and market position of your competitors using our company profiles (including SWOTs, KPIs and latest activity) and competitive landscape tables.
BMI Industry View
An at-a-glance perspective on the latest regulatory developments, key forecast indicators and major corporate developments, covering the prescription, OTC and generics markets. The pharmaceuticals and healthcare SWOT outlines strategic factors that affect the basic assumptions underpinning BMI’s forecast analysis, and taken together with BMI’s political, economic and business environment SWOTs, it gives a complete overview of market climate.
BMI Industry Forecast Scenario
Industry forecasts to end-2019 for all key indicators, supported by explicit assumptions, plus analysis of key downside risks to the main forecasts:
- Healthcare: Total healthcare expenditure (USDbn), healthcare expenditure (% of GDP), healthcare expenditure per capita (USD), hospital beds, doctors, and birth & mortality rates (all per ‘000 population).
- Pharmaceutical Market: Drug expenditure in USDbn, % of GDP and per capita (USD).
- Patented Drug Market: Prescription drug sales (USDbn & % of total sales).
- Generic Drug Market: Generic product sales (USDbn), generic sales (% of total sales).
- OTC Drug Market: OTC sales (USDbn & % of total sales).
- Macroeconomic Forecasts: Nominal and real GDP, % real GDP growth, % private consumption growth, % industrial output growth, % consumer price index, % GDP price deflator, exports, imports, trade balance, current account balance, foreign direct investment, exchange rate against USD, government expenditure and external debt.
BMI’s Pharmaceuticals and Healthcare Risk Reward Index
BMI’s Risk Reward Index provides investors (both national and multinational) looking for opportunities in the region with a clear country-comparative assessment of the market’s risks and potential rewards. Each of the country markets are scored using a sophisticated model that includes more than 40 industry, economic and demographic data points to provide indices of highest to lowest appeal to investors, with each position explained.
A snapshot of key market characteristics, including total size of the pharmaceuticals and healthcare segments, growth drivers, leading therapeutic areas and the competitive landscape
A focus on government healthcare reforms, epidemiological trends, mergers and acquisitions, product launches, market entries, FDI activity, R&D, biotechnology, clinical trials and supply chain issues.
Details of the industry regulatory framework and key legislation covering the licensing of new products/services, pricing and reimbursements, intellectual property, taxation and advertising, as well as analysis of the overall regulatory burden.
The competitive landscape section provides comparative company analyses and index by USD sales and % share of total sales – for the total pharmaceutical sector, as well as the OTC, generics and distribution sub-sectors.
Examines the competitive positioning and short- to medium-term business strategies of key industry players. Strategy is examined within the context of BMI’s industry forecasts, our macroeconomic views and our understanding of the wider competitive landscape to generate Company SWOT analyses. The latest financial and operating statistics and key company developments are also incorporated within the company profiles, enabling a full evaluation of recent company performance and future growth prospects.
*Company profiles are not available for every country. Those reports instead contain information on the current activities of prominent companies operating in the market.