CPhI Middle East & Africa has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 edition of the show, scheduled to take place in September in Abu Dhabi. A new earlier date and location for the event has been disclosed, with the show debuting in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on March 2021.
CPhI Middle East & Africa 2021 will be held at a time when the MENA pharmaceutical market is experiencing exponential growth. According to Fitch Solutions’ Q1 2020 MENA Pharmaceutical & Healthcare Report, MENA pharmaceutical sales are expected to increase by over 24% from US$35.5 billion in 2019 to US$44.1 billion by 2023 – primarily a result of the region’s chronic diseases, particularly cancer, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases.
Sherma Ellis, Brand Manager, CPhI Middle East & Africa, said: “Maintaining the health and safety of all employees, partners, exhibitors and of course our visitors, as well as preparing and delivering an organised gathering that provides effective participation and a positive experience for all, was becoming extremely difficult under the current circumstances. For the past two years CPhI Middle East & Africa has been successful in Abu Dhabi and we would like to thank the UAE Government, the Ministry of Health & Prevention, and our partners for their contribution and support.”
A range of healthcare reforms have taken place in Saudi Arabia in recent years to support and incentivise pharma manufacturers. These include 100% foreign direct investment (FDI) into the sector, efforts to increase the total local pharmaceutical production by 20% by the end of 2020, the launch of e-visas to make the country more accessible, as well as opportunities for business expansion, due to the country’s reliance on imported pharmaceuticals. Furthermore, socioeconomic factors including increased medical insurance coverage, a growing population, higher living standards, and the incidence of non-communicable diseases are all driving additional demand for pharmaceuticals within the kingdom.
“Having consulted with all stakeholders, regarding the venue for the 2021 edition of CPhI Middle East & Africa, the show will take place at the RICEC, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on the 24-25 March 2021. As the second-largest pharma market in the region and the 18th largest economy in the world, there is a myriad of business opportunities for our partners and exhibitors to unlock in Saudi Arabia and we look forward to the opportunities this burgeoning market offers,” added Ellis.