Japanese pharmaceutical market progressively opening to foreign companies

Submitted by cguillet on 26 March 2018

Japan aging population and well-funded health system has enabled the pharmaceutical industry to thrive on the archipelago. According to the exports services of the American Government, Japan pharmaceutical market accounted for $ 88 billion in 2015, a 10,7% increase compared to 2014. Worldwide, Japan is the third largest pharmaceutical industry, mostly supplied by domestic producers.

If promising, the Japanese market was considered hard to reach by foreign companies, for various reasons ranging from the Japanese regulatory framework to the cultural differences between East and West.

This situation is changing, as explained by the EPM Magazine. According to the CPhI report, the Japanese economy is opening to generics and overseas manufactured pharmaceutical products, opening the doors on a large, well-funded market. This opening is the result of both deregulation, and public interest in reducing health-care costs.

This opening to foreign markets is visible in the forthcoming CPhI Event. This event, organised by UBM with the support of the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW), the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency, the Japanese Society of Generic and Biosimilar Medicines, and the Japan Pharmaceutical Traders’ Association, will host 9,000 pharmaceutical industry professionals and 21,000 participants from 56 countries, an increasing amount of foreign countries compared to the previous years.

“CPhI Japan is an accurate bellwether of the wider market trends in the country, and this year we are seeing an acceleration of interest in generics and biologicals, particularly biosimilars — which the market has been previously resilient towards. But there is also more generally increased international interest and investment in all product classes — including innovative medicine — thanks to deregulation and streamlined new drug approval processes,” says Laura Murina, brand manager, CPhI Japan at UBM.

Japan is a strategic third country for ECCP members and it is hoped that such change will foster EU-Japan collaboration.

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