"Belgium Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare Report Q2 2014" now available at Fast Market Research

From: Fast Market Research, Inc.
Published: Tue Mar 25 2014

Belgium continues along the path of recovery. It is a European hub for clinical trials, new drug development and niche research, which attracts the attention of multinational firms. Even though per capita spending on pharmaceuticals is relatively high, it is subjected to continual downward pressure - creating opportunities for growth for manufacturers of generic drugs. In other words, economic agendas mean that the government will have little choice but to promote the use of generic drugs via methods other than patient information campaigns that have been launched in the past, if it is to comply with the fiscal deficit target imposed by the EU. Thus, there is not only room for the increased uptake of generic drugs following patent expiry but it will also become swifter. This trend will reduce costs for governments, out-of-pocket payers and insurance companies, which is increasingly important as developed states reform their healthcare systems over the medium term. Key obstacles include prescribers' brand loyalty, pay-to-delay deals, the near-universal unpopularity of commodity generics and a lack of perfect competition in the pharmaceutical sector.

Full Report Details at
- http://www.fastmr.com/prod/782475_belgium_pharmaceuticals_healthcare_report_q2_2014.aspx?afid=302

Headline Expenditure Projections

* Pharmaceuticals: EUR5.79bn (US$7.64bn) in 2013 to EUR5.68bn (US$7.21bn) in 2014; -1.9% in local currency terms and -5.6% in US dollar terms. Local currency forecast slightly lower than in Q114.
* Healthcare: EUR40.89bn (US$53.98bn) in 2013 to EUR41.66bn (US$52.91bn) in 2014; +1.9% in local currency terms and -2.0% in US dollar terms. Local currency forecast higher than in Q114.

Risk/Reward Rating: In our Q214 Pharmaceutical Risk/Reward Ratings Belgium continues to rank eighth out of the thirteen markets surveyed in the Western European region. It posted above or average scores in all indicators, with the exception of Country Risks.

Key Trends And Developments

In December 2013, The European Commission (EC) started a detailed investigation into Belgium's system of tax relief for companies related to research and development (R&D), and whether it is in accordance with EU state aid rules, according to Reuters. Back in 2006 the EC approved a scheme allowing Belgium to exempt new firms from paying payroll tax on the salaries of scientific staff. The country had pledged to define the categories of research eligible for tax relief, but had failed to do so until 2013, according to the Commission. The EU Commission deems the tax relief granted to certain companies for seven years to be an unfair advantage.

In February 2014, Biogen Idec and UCB signed exclusive agreements granting UCB the right to commercialise Biogen Idec products in South Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and Taiwan, and both develop and commercialise products in China. As part of the relationship, Biogen Idec will supply UCB with its portfolio of multiple sclerosis therapies and investigational candidates.

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