New Horizons and Opportunities in the Saudi Healthcare Sector
May 3, 2017 | Boston, MA
Boston Marriott Long Wharf
The USSABC hosted a one-day conference at the Boston Marriott Long Wharf. The conference provided a platform for senior business executives and government representatives, from both countries, to review specific commercial and investment opportunities and network with potential business partners. Specifically, the event introduced U.S. healthcare manufacturers and service providers to opportunities in Saudi Arabia for sales, technical tie-ups, joint ventures and investments in Saudi Arabia’s expanding healthcare market.
Saudi Arabia Comes to Boston to Present New Opportunities in the Healthcare Sector
Saudi Arabia is encouraging increased foreign direct investment from American companies in its healthcare sector as part of its Saudi Vision 2030 transformation plan. As part of this effort, the Saudi Ministry of Health and Ministry of Commerce and Investment partnered with the U.S.-Saudi Arabian Business Council (USSABC) and GE to host a high-level conference “New Horizons and Opportunities in the Saudi Healthcare Sector”, on May 3, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts.
The Kingdom is actively seeking partnerships with foreign firms to raise the competitiveness and productivity across the healthcare industry. Priorities for future investment include medical device and pharmaceuticals manufacturing, medical information technology, and hospital management, amongst others.
The conference provided a platform for senior business executives and government representatives, from both countries, to review specific commercial and investment opportunities and network with potential business partners. Specifically, the event introduced U.S. healthcare manufacturers and service providers to opportunities in Saudi Arabia for sales, technical tie-ups, joint ventures and investments in Saudi Arabia’s expanding healthcare market.
The program featured panel discussions with U.S. and Saudi company executives who are already successfully engaged in the Saudi market alongside Saudi Government experts from a wide variety of fields, and included ample networking opportunities.
H.E. Dr. Tawfig AlRabiah, Saudi Minister of Health, stated: “Saudi Vision 2030 has given us a driving force to move forward with solid steps regarding the reforms needed to uplift the level of healthcare in the Kingdom. Key to these reforms are public-private partnerships and global best practices. We are reaching out to foreign investors in this vital sector, and want to spearhead this initiative by coming into contact with as many key players as possible from the United States.”
H.E. Dr. Majid AlKassabi, Saudi Minister of Commerce and Investment added: “As a part of Vision 2030, the Kingdom is seeking to form and encourage partnerships with firms to raise the competitiveness and productivity across the healthcare industry. The Saudi Horizons Healthcare Conference brings together the American and Saudi public and private sectors to explore Saudi Arabia’s rapidly expanding and re-structuring healthcare market. These changes are creating lucrative and exciting opportunities for local and foreign investors alike.”
In his remarks, Jeffrey Immelt, Chairman and CEO, GE, discussed the company’s role in high-tech manufacturing, business process outsourcing, and operations in the Kingdom, as well as new training, research, and service centers that GE will be establishing.
Emphasizing the importance of the event, Edward Burton, USSABC President and CEO said, “This is a unique opportunity to inform the American business community in the healthcare industry about the unprecedented market growth opportunities in this critically important sector within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It will also provide unequaled access to the key government and private sector decision makers who are having high developmental impact on the direction of this industry.”
In addition to Ministers AlRabiah and AlKassabi, Saudi high-level officials and executives who addressed the conference included H.E. Dr. Qasim Al Qasabi, CEO, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center; Dr. Hisham Al-Jadhey, CEO, Saudi Food and Drug Administration; Dr. Mahmoud Al-Yamany, CEO, King Fahad Medical City; and Fahad Al Rasheed, Managing Director and CEO, King Abdullah Economic City.
Among the U.S. senior executives who also spoke at the conference are Dr. Omar Ishrak, Chairman and CEO, Medtronic; Dr. Paul Rothman, CEO, Johns Hopkins Medicine; Dr. Marc Boom, President and CEO, Houston Methodist Hospital; and Mr. Dennis Kogod, CEO Emeritus, DaVita International.
Saudi Arabia has allocated $32 billion for healthcare and social spending in its 2017 budget, an increase of nearly $5 billion over 2016 and a significantly larger budget than any other country in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region. In addition, demand for healthcare services in Saudi Arabia is projected to increase by 25 percent through 2025 with expenditure in the sector growing at an annual rate of 10 percent. Over the next five years, Saudi Arabia is expected to spend $180 billion on healthcare: an additional $100 billion on healthcare service provision, $54 billion on pharmaceuticals, and $14 billion on medical products.