Insights and Opportunities
Overview: The medical equipment sector continues to present good opportunities for U.S. firms. Total imports increased by more than 16% from $177 million in 2006 to $206 million in 2007. The medical industry in the Philippines is almost totally dependent on imports. Additional requirements for medical services, new technology, and equipment replacement spur market growth. Philippine medical tourism continues to grow and offer good opportunities for U.S. sellers of medical equipment and instruments.
In 2007, the Philippines’ total import of medical equipment was $206 million. China was the top supplier with a 50% market share. The U.S. was second at about 16%, followed by Singapore (8%); Germany (7%); Japan (6%); and The Netherlands (3%). More than 84% of the Philippines’ importation of Medical Equipment came from these 6 countries alone.
Although China has dislodged the U.S. as the leading supplier of medical equipment, the U.S. still dominates the market for durables (machinery and equipment). Singapore, which ranked third, is the regional base of a number of American and European companies; therefore, it is quite possible that a substantial amount of “Singapore" equipment actually came from the U.S.
The Philippines has 1,771 hospitals with 92,070-bed capacity, among which are 72 hospitals administered by the Philippine Department of Health; 31 infirmaries under the Armed Forces of the Philippines; and 559 government hospitals (provincial, municipal, and city governments and the Red Cross and its Chapters).
The Philippine medical market is partial to American products. U.S.-trained Filipino doctors prefer the high technology of American medical equipment and instruments, despite their higher costs. American brands face increasing third-country competition from China.
Best Products/Services: Electro-medical equipment; Ultrasonic scanning machines; X-ray and radiation equipment; Dialysis instruments and apparatus; and Medical and surgical instruments for cosmetic surgery.
Opportunities: Hospitals throughout the country are upgrading facilities and adapting new technologies to address demand from foreigners and returning residents who avail themselves of healthcare services in the Philippines. Industry sources expect a 5-7% growth in imports and exports of Medical Equipment in the next three years.