The country is devastated by the drug menace.
The pharmaceutical sector is another industry in Pakistan that has potential for massive growth, particularly for French pharmaceutical products and services. The Sindh Medical Stores (SMS) has helped develop a substantial market for many products belonging to the French pharmaceutical sector, including biological vaccines, homeopathic medicines and diagnostic kits, reagents and instruments. Some leading French companies represented by SMS in Pakistan include BioRad Laboratories, Interscience and Nutriset.
Of the 44 French companies set up in Pakistan, including 15 CAC40listed companies, several are operating in the country’s pharmaceutical sector. These include two of France’s leading chemical and pharmaceutical companies, Rhone-Poulenc and Roussel-Uclaf, both of which have several production units across Pakistan.
France has also given Pakistan the opportunity to expand its pharmaceutical sector and enable key players in the industry to reach out to French consumers. Recently, a leading pharmaceutical company in Pakistan, Martin Dow, acquired a pharmaceutical manufacturing facility in Meymac, France. The company is expected to begin operations this year. This will be the first acquisition by a Pakistani pharmaceutical company of a medicine manufacturing facility in France as well as one of the few instances where a Pakistani company has made a significant investment in an EU member country.
France is amongst the biggest consumers for pharmaceutical products, holding the position as the second largest European market for medical care after Germany. It is also one of the most complex markets to promote and commercialise pharmaceutical products. At the moment, France has the world’s highest consumption of medicines per capita at nearly US$300.