The GCC generic drug market reached a value of US$ 3.55 Billion in 2019. Generic drugs are bioequivalent of branded medicines, which have similar dosages, risks, effects, side effects, strengths, intended use and route of administration. They also have identical active ingredients and are relatively less expensive than their branded counterparts, as they do not require extensive research or testing. Nonetheless, their color and shape may differ from the original drug as altering these characteristics does not impact the effectiveness of the medicine. At present, there is a rise in the demand for generic drugs in the GCC region, owing to the developing healthcare industry and the growing awareness about the cost benefits offered by these drugs.
Owing to sedentary lifestyles, high per capita income and altering dietary patterns, there is a significant increase in the prevalence of lifestyle and chronic diseases, such as cancer, diabetes and obesity, in the GCC region. This represents one of the key factors impelling the generic drugs market growth in the region. Moreover, the growing geriatric population is also contributing to the increasing healthcare costs in the region. In line with this, governments of various countries in the GCC region, such as Oman and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), are encouraging the utilization of generic drugs, which is further bolstering the market growth. For instance, the Government of Oman recently introduced the Unified Health Insurance Policy (UHIP) that made health insurance mandatory for citizens and expatriates. It is catalyzing the demand for pharmaceuticals in the country which, in turn, is driving investments for generics manufacturing. Some of the other factors that are propelling the market growth include growing population, increasing penetration of health insurance companies, upcoming patent expiry of various blockbuster medicines and a strong influx of expatriates. Looking forward, IMARC Group expects the GCC generic drug market to continue its strong growth during the next five years.
On the geographical front, Saudi Arabia represents the largest market for generic drugs in the GCC region. The large population in the country represents a key driving factor for the market. Moreover, the Government of Saudi Arabia is promoting joint ventures and sponsoring non-tariff barriers for pharmaceutical manufacturing in the country, which is further projected to accelerate the industry growth.
The competitive landscape of the market has been analyzed in the report, along with the detailed profiles of the major players operating in the industry.
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