The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia consumes 65 percent of all the pharmaceutical products imported into the Gulf region, according to a recently issued report by the Investment & Financing House. The report attributed the high demand for pharmaceuticals in Saudi Arabia to the Kingdom’s large number of hospitals and medical centers, reported Al-Bayan.
Recently publicized statistics reveal that there are 314 hospitals in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with a total capacity of 45,729 beds. The Ministry of Health operates 186 of these hospitals, state-owned agencies operate 39 and the private sector operates 89 hospitals. In addition, there are 1,756 medical clinics in the Kingdom.
The private sector receives 70 percent of the imported pharmaceuticals while the rest is directed to governmental agencies. Saudi Arabia’s total spending on health constituted eight percent of the GDP over the past 10 years, amounting to 37.3 billion Saudi riyals ($9.9 billion) per annum.
The major foreign pharmaceutical companies operating in Saudi Arabia are Smithrline, Hoechst, Lilly, Novartis, fizer and Beecham. — (menareport.com)
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