Businessmen and investors have identified 8 proposals to boost investments in the medical industries sector, including facilitating procedures, giving priority to local medical products, strengthening investment partnerships, providing bank financing, and helping local investors to open export markets for locally produced medicines.
They confirmed to Al-Ittihad that the Corona pandemic highlighted the importance of investment in the medical industries sector, in a way that contributes to strengthening drug security in the country and achieving self-sufficiency in medicines, supplies, protective equipment and medical devices. They added that the recent period has witnessed remarkable interest from the competent authorities to provide more facilities to enhance investment in the medical field, but there is a need for more facilities.
They indicated that the medical sector benefits from a series of incentives and programs in support of vital industries, which were recently disclosed in Abu Dhabi, with the aim of facilitating the business environment in the industrial sector in general, such as the Abu Dhabi Local Content Program and the Electricity Tariff Incentive Program, as well as the decision to add commercial activities to the commercial license. It also provides an industrial license exempt from duties, as well as exemption from customs duties for the two entrances to the industry.
The Department of Economic Development Abu Dhabi recently identified 23 industrial investment fields that focus on the pharmaceutical and health industries, which contribute to achieving self-sufficiency in the health sector in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, including 14 investment areas for new industries, and 9 areas for developing existing industries, within the framework of the Basic Industries Project.
Which is implemented by the Industrial Development Office of the Department, in cooperation and coordination with the Abu Dhabi Investment Office, the Department of Health, Abu Dhabi, and the Abu Dhabi Companion Services Company (SEHA). The list of new investment areas in the medical industries include, medical preparations, medical hospital industries, the manufacture of biological medicines and antibiotics, medical gloves, disposable clothing and caps, medical glasses and protective face masks, the manufacture of ventilator equipment and suction machines, tubes and endoscopes, and the manufacture and manufacture of devices and equipment Monitoring vital signs, manufacturing medical preservatives, manufacturing of laboratory and examination equipment, manufacturing of surgical equipment and instruments, and thermometers. With regard to the development of existing industries, the list includes medical gases, the manufacture of medical solutions, the manufacture of ointments, creams and medicinal gels, the manufacture of solid tablets, the manufacture of solid formulations capsules, oral syrups and suspensions, the manufacture of disinfectants and sterilizers, the manufacture of surgical masks, the manufacture of medical beds, stretchers and an examination chair .
Investors pointed out the importance of the current Ministry of Public Economy’s announcement of the activities in which a foreign investor may own 100,100 ownership, including industries in the field of pharmaceuticals, chemical and plant pharmaceutical products, which will contribute to attracting more foreign investments to the sector. Encouraging investors, businessman Abdullah Omar Baabeed, CEO of AMG Group, stressed the need to pay attention to encouraging investment in the medical sector, pointing to the importance of enhancing the role of chambers of commerce in encouraging investors in the sector, whether through partnerships with foreign investors, as well as reviewing the most important opportunities available in the sector. In front of businessmen, besides working to facilitate procedures.
He explained that investing in the medical sector requires many procedures and requirements, which requires more facilities in completing these procedures, and re-evaluating the specific requirements, indicating that there is a desire from investors in the local market to enter the medical field, both with regard to health industries, and also with regard to institutes Specialized training in the field, which requires special facilities, both with regard to fee exemptions, and also facilitating procedures for bringing in expertise and specialized competencies. Baabeed said that the success of investment in the medical sector requires that it be at a regional level and not a small geographical location, as it depends on strong demand and a large population, which requires the need for the competent authorities, especially the chambers of commerce, to help local investors to open export markets for locally produced medicines, especially In the Gulf region or the Arab countries, as well as strengthening partnerships between Emirati and foreign investors in the sector. He pointed out the importance of giving the Emirati product priority in the local market, whether in terms of hospital purchases, whether governmental or private, as well as covering local medicines as a priority within the scope of health insurance, noting scientific research on the importance of encouraging technology-based and innovation in different institutions. Baabeed emphasized that the Coronavirus pandemic demonstrated the importance of drug security for countries, especially during times of crises and epidemics, stressing that the UAE had taken the lead in launching an integrated system of food, drug and water security strategy years ago, as the Corona crisis proved the success of the Emirati approach.
Supply chains For his part, Adnan Ibrahim Al-Marzouki, CEO of Group International Holdings, stressed that there is a need to expand medical investments of all kinds, and there is even a need to invest in veterinary medicines, given the state’s interest in increasing livestock. He mentioned that some countries believe that importing such medicines from abroad may be the lowest cost of their manufacture at home, but the Corona crisis, and the subsequent trend of countries to stop exporting some medicines, medical equipment, sterilizers, gloves and disinfectants due to the pandemic, as well as the supply chains affected by the repercussions of the crisis, The interest in the need to expand the medical industries increased. Al-Marzouki explained that medical investments require huge investments, which requires the necessity of government encouragement to buy a percentage of the local product, which at least guarantees the stability of these investments, especially at the beginning of business, as well as interest in partnerships between the government and private sectors in the sector.
He added that without a government drive for purchases from local factories, it is difficult for medical investments to succeed, in light of the high cost of industry, noting the importance of providing financing as well to encourage industry in the sector. The Industrial Development Office of the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development recently announced the signing of joint cooperation agreements with 10 leading national banks and banks in the UAE, with the aim of creating a favorable credit environment for the industrial and commercial sector in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.
Local production For his part, Ahmed Al-Yafei, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Petrohab Industrial Investment Company, explained that the Corona crisis confirmed the importance of local production and self-sufficiency with regard to strategic commodities, in order to avoid the difficulty of obtaining the main products, or the occurrence of a price fluctuation to me.
Through the existence of government guarantees to buy the local product or guarantee a specific price, especially at the beginning of the business establishment. He pointed out the importance of licensing facilities, industrial land prices, customs exemptions, and that priority should be given to the local product in terms of government purchases. He explained that the medical sector is a series of incentives that facilitate the business environment in the industrial sector in general, such as the Abu Dhabi program for local content, the electrical tariff incentive program, as well as the decision to add commercial activities to the commercial license, which allows the factory to add commercial activity that supports industrial activities, what facilitates marketing, It also provides an industrial license exempt from duties, as well as exemption from customs duties for industry inputs.
He pointed out the importance of the Ministry of Economy’s announcement, this year, of the activities in which a foreign investor may own 100% ownership, including industries in the field of pharmaceuticals and chemical pharmaceutical products, which contribute to attracting more foreign investments to the sector. 10 factories under construction The total number of licenses issued to medical factories in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi reached 23 licenses with an investment value of 1.992 billion dirhams, of which 10 factories are currently under construction, with investments amounting to 923 million dirhams, 13g licenses in the case of production with a value of 1.069 billion dirhams, divided into 5 factories It produces medical protection supplies with an investment value of 268 million dirhams, 4 factories for the production of medicines with an investment value of 467 million dirhams, and 4 factories that produce medical devices and equipment with an investment value of 334 million dirhams. The Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development recently stated that the annual consumption value of the main government and private hospitals of priority medical products amounts to 5.5 billion dirhams, according to studies by a specialized company, the pharmaceutical products are led by 90%, equivalent to 5 billion dirhams, and medical supplies by 6 , And medical equipment 4.