4G Delay Confirms Risk Outlook
The Portuguese pharmaceutical industry employed just over 10,000 people in 2008; and the 15 leading companies employ nearly 30% of the workforce. According to Infarmed, there were 130 pharmaceutical companies operating in Portugal in 2010. While this figure is stable compared to 2009, it marks a decline from 136 firms in 2008 and 141 firms in 2004. The industry is dominated by multinationals, most of which import finished pharmaceuticals into Portugal. In 2011-13, the pharmaceutical industry contributed 38 per cent of the financial adjustment in the health sector, making the sector increasingly challenging, according to Pfizer. The pharmaceutical sector's debt in June 2012 exceeded $238bnm, according to the National Association of Pharmacists
According to data published by RCM Pharma on the Top 50 pharmaceutical companies operating in Portugal (citing IMS Health), Merck & Co was the leading pharmaceutical company in value in August 2013, followed by Novartis, domestic player Bial, Pfizer and AstraZeneca. Other Portuguese players appear further down: Generis ranks 10th (with Portuguese sales of EUR46.9mn in the 12 months to March 2012); Medinfar stands in 15th position (EUR42.5mn); Lusomedicamenta stands in 38th place; and Labesfal Genericos is 48th. It is significant that many of these domestic drugmakers produce generic drugs.