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Market Overview: The Medical Device Industry in China

2017-12-1 | Read:837

China is currently one of the world’s most promising markets for medical devices.Sales of medical devices in the country reached RMB 200 billion in 2013,making it the second largest market in the world,according to the U.S.Commercial Service.Even compared to other sectors of the Chinese economy,the market in medical devices is one of the fastest growing market sectors in the country.

Due to the One-child policy,which only recently was made slightly more lenient,a growing share of China’s population will soon be over the age of 60,closely aligning its demographic dynamics with those of many developed countries.Alongside these changes,rising living standards have given rise to rapid growth in the demand for medical products and services.The Chinese government has made a priority of developing the health care sector as well,especially investing in the central and western parts of the country,where the quality of health care is lagging behind the rest of China.

Despite a 20 percent increase in public spending on health care in recent years,China currently makes up only two to three percent of the global market for medical devices.Internationally,the respective markets for medicines and medical devices are of roughly equal size;however in China,the market for medical devices is only 14 percent of that for medicines.

Observers explain these extremely lopsided dynamics by pointing to the practice in Chinese health care of favoring treatment with drugs over medical devices,and a focus on treatment over prevention.These conditions have left a large part of the market underserved,which many believe may change in the near future,spurring even higher demand for medical devices.