One of the indisputable economic success stories of the last half-century, South Korea now stands as the world’s 11th largest economy, with a reputation for industrial excellence and innovation. As the Korean state shifts its focus towards healthcare and the life sciences and Korean firms begin to internationalize with greater purpose, the attentions of the global investment community are being held evermore by a country that is thinking big.
PharmaBoardroom’s latest report, Healthcare & Life Sciences Review: Korea covers the areas within the life sciences where Korea is garnering an increasingly strong international reputation, highlighting the country’s prowess in R&D and clinical trials, its thriving biotech ecosystem, and its growing footprint in the exciting field of regenerative medicine. Actors featured range from the heads of local biotechs, to association leaders, government officials, and the visionary CEOs spearheading the push of Korea’s large industrial conglomerates, or ‘Chaebols’, into the life sciences.
Also covered is the Korean domestic healthcare landscape. High-quality healthcare infrastructure and a rapidly ageing populace have led several pharma MNCs to bring some of the world’s most advanced medicines to Korea ahead of schedule. Additionally, President Moon Jae-In’s ‘Mooncare’ reforms aim to expand healthcare coverage to cover 70 percent of patients’ costs and expand reimbursement to previously uncovered treatments. This stands as a boon for both patients and, potentially, for industry players as demand for medical services increases and widening reimbursement introduces new opportunities.
Korea is not, however, a market without challenges. Already-low pricing may be exacerbated by ‘Mooncare’ and the short-notice changes in regulation for which Korea has garnered something of a reputation have led to a degree of uncertainty among the domestic industry. Nevertheless, Korea is undoubtedly increasing in importance as a life science investment destination, with a flourishing domestic market, an abundance of top-notch scientific research, and an increasingly international outlook.