Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 02/14/2013 -- Iraq's weak intellectual property (IP) framework, poor healthcare infrastructure and poor regulation of pharmaceutical sales channels have allowed a huge black market trade in real and counterfeit pharmaceuticals to develop. The government is now attempting to reassert control over the sector through initiatives such as the creation of an agency tasked with closing down unregistered health practitioners, but with the sales channels now so porous, it will be very challenging to address this problem in the short term.
Headline Expenditure Projections
- Pharmaceuticals: IQD1,239bn (US$1.06mn) in 2011 to IQD1,479bn (US$1.26bn) in 2012; +19.3% in local currency and +19.2% in US dollar terms. Forecast broadly unchanged from Q312.
- Healthcare: IQD9,439bn (US$8.07bn) in 2011 to IQD11,536bn (US$9.86bn) in 2012; +22.1% in local currency and +21.1% in US dollar terms. Forecast broadly unchanged from Q312.
- Medical devices: IQD407.35bn (US$348mn) in 2011 to IQD484.44bn (US$414mn) in 2012; +18.9% in local currency and +18.8% US dollar terms. Forecast broadly unchanged from Q312.
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Risk/Reward Rating: In our latest Pharmaceuticals Risk/Reward Ratings (RRRs), Iraq moved up by one position to now rank 13th out of the 30 markets surveyed in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region. The country's composite score improved 3.4% on a quarter-on-quarter (q-o-q) basis, to 46.7 out of the maximum 100 points, on account of its slightly raised rewards profile. However, Iraq's risks remain high due to the country's political and security instability, which will continue to pose significant downward risks to our forecasts.
Key Trends And Developments
- In June 2012, the Iraqi Ministry of Health and USAID's Health Promotion Programme In Iraq (HIPPI) launched a mass-media campaign to promote good nutrition and exercise among young people. The print, radio and TV campaign, which will target children and parents, will include in-school activities to promote balanced diets and exercise. The HPPI is responsible for building up the ministry's capacity to implement and evaluate activities that promote better health and reduce illness and injury among people in Iraq. In the meantime, government funding for medical treatments, including provision, remains viewed as inefficient.
- In mid-2012, Iraqi News reported that a new hospital will be opened in 18 months' time in Ramadi, the capital of the Angar province, west of Baghdad. The Heit hospital, which is expected to contain 200 beds, will cost US$75mn, according to the statements made by Finance Minister Rafiaa al-Issawi and Health Minister Majied Amin during the laying of the hospital's foundations.
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