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Dubai Science Park, The Executive Council Of Dubai Set Blueprint For UAE Healthcare Sector
(19 September 2017)
Five key opportunities have been successfully identified to develop the pharmaceutical and medical equipment sector as one of the targeted industrial subsectors of Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030


 

Dubai Science Park (DSP), the region’s first business community dedicated to the science sector, today announced that it has achieved significant progress in identifying, developing and promoting opportunities in Dubai’s pharmaceutical and medical equipment sector. The achievement was the result of successful collaboration with The Executive Council of Dubai, Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority (JAFZA), Dubai South and Dubai Healthcare City Authority.

The announcement coincides with The Executive Council’s recent comments about entering the implementation phase of the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030.

The pharmaceutical and medical equipment sector is expected to play a key role in the development of the UAE’s industry. The Government of Dubai forecasts the entire sector to grow by an additional AED18 billion, increasing Dubai’s gross domestic product (GDP) by an extra AED165 billion, whilst creating 27,000 jobs by as early as 2030.

The ambitious target was set in March 2017 at the ‘Dubai Plan 2021 Creative Labs’, an interactive event organised by The Executive Council of Dubai. The event worked toward the goals of the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030, designed to attract manufacturers to six key sectors including pharmaceuticals and medical equipment.

Her Excellency Aisha Miran, Assistant Secretary General, Strategy Management and Governance Sector at The Executive Council of Dubai, said: “This sector takes priority in the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030 since it helps accelerate innovation and economic growth in Dubai. We are currently witnessing strategic development in all the core sectors, such as the healthcare sector, thanks to the research and innovation taking place in laboratories and subsequently implemented for the benefit of patients. We hope that our efforts will see continuous success so that Dubai can always be a global leader in various fields.”

Marwan Abdulaziz Janahi, Executive Director at DSP and Chairing Member of the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Equipment taskforce, entrusted with the delivery, said: “With a shared ambition to turn Dubai into a global healthcare hub, we have worked closely with The Executive Council of Dubai and our taskforce members to support the delivery of the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030. We are closely aligned with the Council in moving towards our overriding goal of positioning the UAE at the forefront of industrial manufacturing.

“To this end, we have successfully identified five key opportunities that are expected to have a significant impact on the healthcare sector in Dubai. Enabled by a favourable regulatory and IP environment, infrastructural developments, improved R&D capacities, and access to government financing, we expect the opportunities to bring the added benefits of job creation, educational prospects and enhanced patient services, whilst helping establish Dubai as a popular destination in terms of medical tourism for patients seeking specialised treatment from across the MENA region and further afield.”

The five key opportunities identified by the taskforce include nutraceuticals, blood plasma, 3D printing, super generics and next-generation sequencing.

Nutraceuticals: There is an increasing desire for foods and ingredients that are naturally functional, and nutraceuticals have a ready market in the Middle East and Africa with sales estimated to reach US$15.1 billion by 2025, whilst products with a diabetes and metabolic disease focus are currently estimated at US$1 billion with an 8% CAGR.

Blood Plasma: 75% of blood plasma products are manufactured in the US and Europe. With no production facilities in the region, the Middle East and Africa rely entirely on imports and run the risk of shortages in supply. Dubai is well-positioned to fulfil local demand and become the regional export hub with a market expected to grow by 10% year-on-year.

3D Printing: According to findings by Dubai Science Park, this sector represents a great opportunity for Dubai with segments covering 3D-printed teeth, bones, artificial organs, medical and surgical devices, and hearing aids. This sector is projected to reach US$453 million by 2025 with opportunities in attracting printing start-ups and established manufacturers.

Super Generics: Contrary to generic drugs, which are clones of brand-name products, super generics differ in formulation or method of delivery. Polypills are an attractive opportunity to be developed in Dubai, helping positioning the city as an innovation hub with added value products with current estimated growth prospects of US$900 million in the region.

Next-generation Sequencing (NGS): A pillar of personalised medicine that allows the design of treatments based on individual needs, NGS is a quick, extensive and cost-effective method of DNA analysis. NGS is a fast-growing market and is estimated to reach US$22 billion globally and US$400 million in the Middle East region by 2025.

In the near future, the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Equipment Taskforce will appoint specialised working groups, each tasked with the implementation of enabling features aimed at nurturing the developments of each of the highlighted opportunities. The goals are tied to a timeline spanning a one- to ten-year period. 

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