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Global Pharma Market Roundtable – Keith McElkearney


Two of today’s emerging markets in the pharmaceutical space, China and Ireland, continue to make a mark on the global market as a whole, while operating independently and excelling in diverse areas.

Although certain markets tend to dominate the news sphere, the pharmaceutical industry is truly a global one—with many countries contributing research, resources, and (ultimately) new drugs. However, countries continue to fight for dominance in the pharmaceutical space.

According to both the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) and World Atlas, the top three global pharmaceutical markets are presently the U.S., Japan, and China. ABPI reports that, as of 2013, the U.S. was worth approximately 340 million, with Japan coming to 94 million, and China close on its heels at 87 million. CPhI projects China, in particular, to reach $150 billion worldwide in 2016. The country currently covers 40 percent of global API production and is the world’s largest producer of pharmaceutical ingredients. By 2020, some experts predict that China will become the leading player in Asia.
But there are many more international markets that continue to emerge, bearing significant promise for the years to come. Ireland, according to IPHA, has plants from approximately 120 oversees companies, including nine of the top 10 big pharma companies. In addition, Ireland accounts for more than 50 percent of all exports and is the largest net exporter of pharmaceuticals in the European Union (EU). Twenty-five thousand people in Ireland are directly employed in the pharmaceutical sector, says McGee Pharma International, with an additional 25,000 providing “supporting services.”

Century 3 (C3), a full service project life-cycle engineering firm in China, and LotusWorks, engineering and technical service experts in the pharmaceutical supplier space in Ireland, participated in a round table with Pharmaceutical Processing to discuss how the pharmaceutical industry is impacted by their global market as well as where each of these markets is specifically excelling.

Li Yuan, PE, LEED AP, Vice President Director, Pharmaceutical Business Unit, Century 3, and Keith McElkearney, Key Account Manager, BioPharma, LotusWorks, participated in the round table. Their edited responses are included in the article.






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Travis Miller


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