Vietnam’s Growing Pharmaceutical Industry Attracting Foreign Players

June 2022

Vietnam´s pharmaceutical industry is growing strongly, benefitting from stable input costs. According to SSI Research, during the first quarter of 2022 total pharmaceutical revenue of the country increased by 7% over the same period in 2021, expecting that the industry will keep on an upward trajectory in the near future. In particular, the mass opening of new pharmacy chains is predicted to be a key engine for the growth of the sector. The three largest drugstore chains, Long Chau, An Khang and Pharmacity, are all expanding across the country.

According to a survey by IQVIA, the total number of drug stores in Vietnam in 2016 was 55,300, with only 186 stores belonging to a pharmacy chain. In 2021, the figure reached 44,600 units, of which 1,600 stores belong to a drugstore chain. The top three drugstore chains aim to bring the total number of drug stores in the pharmacy chain to 7,300 in 2025.

Importantly, the market is attracting foreign companies. For instance, Abbott has recently received authorization for the sale of its COVID-19 antigen self-test in Vietnam. The company has also provided medical supplies for hospitals in Ho Chi Minh City, Bac Giang, Binh Duong, and Dong Nai provinces.

Similarly, Merck has been authorized to partner with local contract manufacturing organizations for the generic versions of Merck & Co’s COVID-19 antiviral pill, molnupiravir. Pfizer is also continuing to expand manufacturing capabilities and processes in the country.

(Source: VietnamPlus, Vietnamnet)

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