Nobel Ilac grows in Belarus
Turkey’s Nobel Ilac has become the fastest growing company in Belarus, where a policy has been enacted to increase domestic production in medicine. Cihangir Gurkan Sen, General Manager of Nobel Ilac Belarus, said that they operate in a difficult market - Belarus has a notoriously low rate of reimbursement within the general health insurance system and individuals are sensitive to drug prices - but nonetheless sales in pharmacies grew by 43.55 percent and market share by 29.96 percent in this environment.
Nobel Ilac has been in the Belarus market for than 10 years as the first and only Turkish pharmaceutical company operating in the country. Sen stated that Belarus offers significant opportunities with its population of 10 million and a drug market approaching one billion dollars in retail sales. “We currently have over 30 trademarks and over 50 commercial forms in our product range. We aim to double this number in the next 5 years,” Sen said. “In particular, we give priority to licensing new molecules that do not have a license in the country.”
The Belarusian pharmaceutical market is difficult due to the import substitution policy of the country which makes imported products prohibitively expensive. “The average price of domestic drugs is $2, imported drugs are about $6,” Sen noted. “We attach great importance to offering quality products at affordable prices. Nobel has been a firm increasing its market share each year in Belarus since its first year of operation. In 2017, we were in first place in terms of growth and market share increases among all national and foreign drug companies in the country by growing about 4 times more than the general drug market in the pharmacy sector.”
In Belarus, there are more than 25 domestic producers and domestic production can be considered strong, Sen added. The market share of domestic medicines in the last five years has increased from 25 percent to 50 percent on a turnover basis and is close to 70 percent by pillbox. “For this reason, we are evaluating opportunities for establishing a production facility in the country in the middle and long term,” Sen noted.