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The Outlook for Medical Devices in North East Asia

NEW YORK, Dec. 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- announces that a new market research report is available in its catalogue:

The Outlook for Medical Devices in North East Asia

Four key markets covered

Highly-detailed analysis providing comprehensive quarterly-updated reports for leading markets in the region:China Japan South Korea TaiwanMARKET OUTLOOK

Key national data projections

Current market size

Unique 5-year market projections

Market outlook

Market structure

Including statistical data on imports and exports

Market access

Including distribution and medical device regulation

Healthcare analysis

Including demographics, healthcare system, health expenditure, healthcare infrastructure and personnel HEALTHCARE DATA A comprehensive tabula review of the market, including economic indicators, demographics, health expenditure, hospital and primary care data, and healthcare personnel.


Details of the medical equipment distributors held in Espicom's database at the time of publication.

Detailed analysis of four health markets which account for 15% of the global medical device market and which present immense potential

Japan, China, South Korea and Taiwan are ranked among the biggest medical device markets in the world. In 2008, these four countries collectively spent an estimated US$30.9 billion, representing a total 14.7% of the world market.

Diverse markets, diverse opportunities

These four countries are currently undergoing different phases of development, both in overall terms and more pertinently, in the growth of the

respective medical device markets.

Japan, South Korea and Taiwan represent highly developed medical device markets with advanced healthcare systems & high levels of spending, both in the private and public sector. This has inevitably placed a strain on the respective governments, who have in recent years tried to temper escalating spending by introducing various cost containment strategies, including periodical price cuts/reimbursements for medical devices and equipment.

However, spending has continued to rise, key factors being the ageing demographic and the high standards of healthcare the population has grown to expect.

Japan and South Korea in particular have strong domestic manufacturing capabilities, especially for modern high-tech medical devices, but these countries continue still to rely heavily on imports to meet its demand.

China's big challenge

China's healthcare provision is somewhat lacking when compared to the other three countries, but it remains one of the fastest growing countries in the world, expanding at a rate of 9.1% in 2008. This growth rate, along with the other countries, will be impacted by the global economic downturn, but compared to some other industries, the healthcare sector will not be as adversely affected as it based on strong fundamentals. The medical device sector growth continues to be backed by actual, and not artificial, demand which is not likelyto change significantly. The Chinese government, in January 2009 for example, have publicly pledged to spend 850 billion yuan (US$123 billion) by 2011 to provide a universal primary medical service for the country's 1.3 billion people.


* China has the world's largest population. In 2008, it was officially estimated at 1,328.0 million.

* The Chinese government plans to expand the health insurance programme to cover all rural residents. Urban health insurance is already well established and the government plans to cover all urban dwellers, including the unemployed and children, by 2010.

* The Chinese medical device market is largely supplied by imports or products made locally by multinational joint ventures, especially at the higher end of the technology scale.

* The regulatory system has been notoriously difficult to negotiate successfully. In an attempt to remedy this, revisions to the registration process have been implemented.


* The USA and Germany are the only countries to import more medical equipment than Japan, Conversely, Japan is the eighth highest exporter of medical devices in the world.

* A rapidly ageing population has burdened the healthcare system both in terms of funding and facilities. As a result, payments made by the government to medical institutions have been slashed.

* The growing number of patients requiring long-term care and the advent of the elderly health insurance system offers great potential within the market.

* Japan has the most expensive medical equipment in the world. It should however be borne in mind that some of the reasons for this lie with a distribution system that hikes up retail prices with hidden costs.

* An awkward regulatory system, a slow approval process and cultural differences have often put off some overseas investors, although recent legislation has attempted to address many access difficulties.


* Along with South Korea, Taiwan is one of the richer 'Asian Tiger' economies. Per capita GDP is similar to New Zealand, and behind only Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong and Australia in the region.

* Provision of healthcare is generally in the private sector. There is considered to be widespread overuse of services such as outpatient consultations and drug prescriptions. The government is looking at reducing this, in a further attempt to control health insurance bills.

* Imports supply around 75% of the medical equipment market. There is a growing domestic industry, which is becoming more sophisticated. However, local production remains fragmented and largely geared to supplying export markets.

* Taiwan's medical device regulation is bureaucratic and opaque. Regulations are broadly based on a US/Japanese risk-based approach, but the process can be unpredictable.

South Korea

* Espicom estimates the South Korean medical market to achieve an annual growth of 7%. Based on this rate, the market will be worth US$4 billion by 2013. This makes it one of the world's top 15 markets.

* South Korea has the highest healthcare expenditure of all the 'Asian Tigers', with an estimated 55% funded by the public sector.

* The government has been forced to implement cost-cutting measures in recent years, owing to a large deficit faced by the healthcare system. This problem is exacerbated by a rapidly ageing population.

* From a regulatory and legal point of view, the market is generally regarded as 'difficult'. It remains to be seen, but the situation should improve since the FTA was signed with the USA in 2007, which calls for more transparency especially in the pricing & reimbursement.

* South Korea is predominantly supplied by imports, largely from the USA, Germany and Japan. Imports of medical devices have grown strongly in recent years, growing by 94% over five years to reach US$2.4 billion in 2007.

To order this report:Managed care Industry: The Outlook for Medical Devices in North East Asia


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Nicolas Bombourg
US: (805)652-2626
Intl: +1 805-652-2626

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