Gigantic rice paddies, traditional conical hats, the Mekong delta and the appalling war 50 years ago: these are what usually come to mind when one thinks of Vietnam …
But this is a rather historical perspective on a country that is constantly changing and striving forward. One simple example of this rapid change can be seen on the streets of Ho Chi Minh city. Ten years ago, the roads were dominated by motor scooters and cars tended to be rare. The scooters may not have vanished today, but the ratio between cars and scooters has shifted heavily in favor of cars.
With its population of roughly 93 million, Vietnam is an emerging nation that also profits from membership in the ASEAN association and is one of the fastest growing pharmaceuticals markets in all of Southeast Asia.
In 2015, the Vietnamese pharmaceutical market was valued at roughly 3.5 billion US dollars, and by 2020 this is expected to grow to roughly 7 billion US dollars. A very large share of the pharmaceuticals or the corresponding active ingredients offered in Vietnam, are still imported. This should however change over time. The Vietnamese government is doing everything it can to ensure that up to 80 percent of the pharmaceuticals offered in Vietnam will be produced domestically over the medium term.
There are currently over 170 pharmaceutical companies in Vietnam. To increase the quality of locally produced pharmaceuticals, in 2012 the government required that pharmaceutical companies produce according to GMP guidelines and obtain a corresponding certificate. This means that the Vietnamese pharma market will certainly remain what it already is today: exciting!