Life Science opportunities

An Expert's View about Laboratories, Diagnostics in Qatar

Last updated: 21 Aug 2011

Qatar is investing heavily in its life sciences sector particularly healthcare to cater to demand from a growing population. It aims to increase its current hospital bed capacity from 1917 currently to 2633 by 2013.

Sector briefing Life Science opportunities in Qatar Why Qatar? Qatar is investing heavily in its life sciences sector particularly healthcare to cater to demand from a growing population. It aims to increase its current hospital bed capacity from 1917 currently to 2633 by 2013. QR8.8bn (over US$2.4bn) of Qatar?s 2011-2012 State Budget is earmarked for expansions and improvements within the sector. Liberalisation of investment laws and public-private strategic partnerships in the running of new hospitals/health centres for expatriate workers will further develop the sector and present opportunities. opportunities and an introduction to other Qatar?s aim of providing effective domestic relevant issue. healthcare services is coupled with aspirations to become a research and development centre ?Qatar?s aim of providing including in the area of life sciences. Through effective domestic healthcare these initiatives Qatar aims to become the services is coupled with healthcare centre of choice for the region. An important element in delivering this will be a aspirations to become the new medical and research centre ? Sidra. healthcare centre of choice for the region? Find general information on the Qatari market conditions on UKTI?s website. The Doing Business Guide for Qatar gives an overview of Qatar?s economy, business culture, potential UK Trade & Investment Sector briefing: Life Science opportunities in Qatar Sidra are already speaking to companies Opportunities providing supplies of specialist medical equipment. The bulk of tendering for the Qatar?s National Health Strategy (2011-2016) project is expected to appear from Autumn was launched on 3 April 2011 and provides 2011 onward. direction to acheiving the health goals and objectives of the Qatar National Vision 2030. Healthcare Investment & Operation The strategy is broken into seven broad goals Changes to the law in Qatar now allows for and can be accessed at foreign companies to invest in the healtcare sector without the need for a local partner. The Supreme Council of Health overseas the Under this, the Supreme Council of Health has healthcare sector in Qatar. Around 95% of been speaking to foreign partners to help build healthcare is delivered through Hamad Medical and operate around 3 hospitals catering Corporation, the state healthcare provider. specifically to foreign workers. Opportunities for UK lifescience related Hospital furniture companies in Qatar can be broadly broken The new hospitals/healthcare establishments down into the areas/projects below. A growing being built require all manor of hospital importance is being attached to in-country furniture (medical and non-medical). after sales services either through the Opportunities exist for companies with a establishment of an office in Qatar or through a proven record of equiping large medical reliable agent/distributor. Products are establishments. In general, companies with the assessed against american standards and ability to undertake the entire non-medical leaving free product samples with medical furniture package (as opposed to parts of it) establishments to test has some traction in have good potential in the market. terms of securing sales. Staffing For sometime Qatar has been looking at Attracting healthcare professionals and skilled introducing mandatory health insurance. Under administrators into the healthcare system this employers will be responsible for ensuring remains a key challenge. The small number of cover of their employees. When introduced this local Qatari doctors coming into the system will further develop the healthcare sector and coupled with new hospitals scheduled to come make it more competitive. on line, will make staffing challenges more acute. Healthcare/medical education and The Hamad Medical City training programmes are already underway to The Hamad Medical City Complex is a $1bn help deliver more healthcare professionals into project. When completed it will offer around the sector. Qatar has formed partnerships with 750 new bed space. The facility is not fully foreign establishements now operating in operational and unlikely to be open until early Qatar. These include the University of Calagry- 2013. Opportunities still exist for all manor of Qatar providing nursing training and the Weill medical supplies which are tendered through Cornell Medical College Qatar. Opportunites the local press and through limited tenders exist for specialist healthcare proffessional (i.e. by invtation only). The bulk of placement companies with a global reach. consumables will be tendered for in late 2011/early 2012. In general, routine UK Preventative Care medical consumables do not fair well in tenders While providing additional medical facilities to unless they are competitively priced. cater to an increasing population, Qatar realises the need for raising public awareness Sidra Medical & Research Center of preventive care longer-term. Iniatiatives to The $2.5bn Sidra facility is scheduled to open change the reliance on tertiary care being in late 2012 and enjoys a $7.9bn endowment. delivered from hospitals, towards delivery from The 412 bed teaching establishment will have a primary healthcare centres present some particular focus on paediatrics and women?s opportunities. Qatar has also launched a healthcare and will be based on the North campaign aimed at changing the eating habits American AMC model. Its research will centre of children? Healthy Steps in Qatar. on health conditions most effecting the region (eg diabetes, cancer, cardio vascular conditions) and around feto-maternal health. Pharmaceuticals UK Trade & Investment Sector briefing: Life Science opportunities in Qatar Qatar?s pharmaceutical market was valued at around US$392m in 2010 and is growing. The purchase of pharmaceuticals by local health establishments is usually done in one of three ways; through local agents/distributors; directly from pharmaceutical companies; or through bulk GCC purchasing agreements. Despite these, the market requires more pharmaceuticals than presently available in Qatar. Supplements such as vitamin D are also in regular demand. Medical Research Sidra (see above) will be an important element in Qatar?s medical research plans. Other organisations carrying out research include Hamad Medical Corporation and Weill Cornell Medical College Qatar. These include programmes looking at stem cells, reproductive biology, genomics and genetic and molecular medicine. The Qatar Science & Technology Park (QSTP) is also home to many international companies conducting R &D i ncluding i n t he a rea of l ife sciences. T he p ark se eks t o a ttract international companies to establish and conduct R& D activity w ithin it. Q STP also assists its tenants to commercialise their technologies/programme o utputs. D etails o f programmes being conducted at the park can be found at If you have any questions on the opportunities above, contact the UKTI contacts named in this report. Business opportunities aimed specifically at UK companies are added daily to UKTI?s website. These leads are sourced by our staff overseas in British Embassies, High Commissions and Consulates, across all sectors and in over 100 markets. You can be alerted to business opportunities on a regular basis by registering on the UKTI website. Find out more on UKTI?s business opportunities service on the UKTI website. UK Trade & Investment Sector briefing: Life Science opportunities in Qatar Major events and activities UKTI contacts Qatar Health 2011 Angela Gratze Trade & Investment Time: 16-20 December 2011 British Embassy Doha Tel: (00 974) 4496 2074 Arab Health 2012 (Dubai) Email: Time: 23-26 January 2012 UKTI Doha Find full details of all events in this British Embassy Doha country and sector on the UKTI website. Tel: (00 974) 4496 2000 New export events are added daily to the site Email: and you can register to be alerted to them on a daily, weekly or monthly basis UKTI?s Tradeshow Access Programme (TAP) provides grant support for eligible Small & Medium Sized Enterprises (SME's) to attend trade shows overseas. Find out more about UKTI support for attendance at overseas events UK Trade & Investment Sector briefing: Life Science opportunities in Qatar ? Establishment of interest of such Next steps - contacts in working with you How UKTI can help ? Arranging appointments ? Organise seminars or other events for British companies wishing to develop their you to meet contacts and promote your business in the Qatar market are advised to company in the Qatari market undertake as much market research and planning as possible in the UK. UKTI?s team in This work is available via our Overseas Market Qatar, with its wide local knowledge and Introduction Service (OMIS) a chargeable experience, can provide a range of services to service which assists British-based companies British-based companies wishing to grow their wishing to enter or expand their business in business in global markets. overseas markets. This can include: To find out more about commissioning this ? Provision of market information work, or accessing other UKTI services and ? Validated lists of agents/distributors specialist advice, please visit the UKTI website ? Key market players or potential to find contact details for your local UKTI customers in the Qatari market office. Whereas every effort has been made to ensure that the information given in this document is accurate, neither UK Trade & Investment nor its parent Departments (the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills, and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office), accept liability for any errors, omissions or misleading statements, and no warranty is given or responsibility accepted as to the standing of any individual, firm, company or other organisation mentioned. Published 2011 by UK Trade & Investment. Crown Copyright © You may reuse this information (not including logos, images and case studies) free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the Open Government Licence. To view this licence, visit government-licence/ or write to the Information Policy Team, The National Archives, Kew, London TW9 4DU, or email: This publication is also available from our website at or for more information please telephone +44 (0)20 7215 8000. UK Trade & Investment Sector briefing: Life Science opportunities in Qatar
Posted: 21 August 2011, last updated 21 August 2011