Protection of Intellectual Property Helps Saudi Pharmaceutical Industry Attract More Investments

Approving protection of intellectual property prompts an increase in investments in the Saudi pharmaceutical industry. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
Approving protection of intellectual property prompts an increase in investments in the Saudi pharmaceutical industry. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
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Protection of Intellectual Property Helps Saudi Pharmaceutical Industry Attract More Investments

Approving protection of intellectual property prompts an increase in investments in the Saudi pharmaceutical industry. (Asharq Al-Awsat)
Approving protection of intellectual property prompts an increase in investments in the Saudi pharmaceutical industry. (Asharq Al-Awsat)

Samir Khalil, executive director for the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) Middle East and Africa (MEA), confirmed that Saudi Arabia’s protection of intellectual property will boost the Kingdom’s pharmaceutical industry.

Khalil also predicted that the size of the Saudi pharmaceutical market, which is the largest in the region, will reach 39 billion riyals ($10.4 billion) by 2024.

Through empowering the Saudi Authority for Intellectual Property, the Kingdom’s leadership aims to encourage pharmaceutical manufacture, Khalil said in an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat.

He noted that PhRMA and its affiliated companies view positively the Saudi plan for national transformation, known as Vision 2030, especially on how it tackles developing the innovative pharmaceutical sector through attracting more investment and conducting advanced clinical research.

More so, the Global Intellectual Property Challenges Forum, held on the sidelines of the 2020 G20 Riyadh summit under Saudi Presidency, has strengthened existing policies and global cooperation on developing and manufacturing treatments and vaccines for the coronavirus.

Khalil indicated that there are 570 treatments and 51 vaccines for Covid-19 currently being tested in the world.

He stressed that the Middle East and Africa region hosts one of the world’s most dynamic pharmaceutical markets with an accelerating industrial growth.

Noting that Saudi Arabia is one of the largest pharmaceutical markets in the region, Khalil said that the Kingdom has witnessed dramatic development over the past years. This was triggered by the increase in population, the rise in GDP and the emergence of more diseases that require treatment.

Speaking on Vision 2030’s strategy for encouraging investment in the pharmaceutical industry, Khalil said: “We have worked over the past years to explore many opportunities to promote policies that contribute to attracting innovation to the region.”

PhRMA's goals focus on helping patients by providing them with the latest innovative medicines and vaccines. The trade group also places great importance on strengthening the concept of protecting intellectual property in the pharmaceutical industry sector. Systems that provide an incubating environment for the protection of innovation are perceived as inviting.



Oil Falls on Lingering Demand Concerns in China

The sun is seen behind a crude oil pump jack in the Permian Basin in Loving County, Texas, US, November 22, 2019. REUTERS/Angus Mordant
The sun is seen behind a crude oil pump jack in the Permian Basin in Loving County, Texas, US, November 22, 2019. REUTERS/Angus Mordant
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Oil Falls on Lingering Demand Concerns in China

The sun is seen behind a crude oil pump jack in the Permian Basin in Loving County, Texas, US, November 22, 2019. REUTERS/Angus Mordant
The sun is seen behind a crude oil pump jack in the Permian Basin in Loving County, Texas, US, November 22, 2019. REUTERS/Angus Mordant

Oil prices declined more than 1% on Tuesday on worries of a slowing Chinese economy crimping demand and despite a growing consensus the US Federal Reserve could begin cutting its key interest rate as soon as September.

Brent futures were down $1.31, or 1.54%, to $83.54 a barrel at 1317 GMT, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was down $1.41, or 1.72%, to $80.50.

The weaker Chinese economic data "cast some doubts on whether market participants are being overly optimistic" regarding China's oil demand outlook, IG market strategist Yeap Jun Rong wrote in an email, Reuters reported.

The world's second-largest economy grew 4.7% in April-June, official data showed, its slowest rate since the first quarter of 2023 and missing a 5.1% forecast in a Reuters poll. It slowed from the previous quarter's 5.3% expansion, hamstrung by a protracted property downturn and job insecurity.

"Its 2Q GDP and retail sales figures had surprised on the downside by a significant margin, while anticipation for stronger stimulus measures at the Third Plenum may face the risk of disappointment," Yeap added, referring to a key economic leadership meeting in Beijing this week.

In the US, Fed Chair Jerome Powell said on Monday the three US inflation readings over the second quarter of this year "add somewhat to confidence" that the pace of price increases is returning to the central bank's target in a sustainable fashion, remarks which market participants interpreted as indicating that a turn to interest rate cuts may not be far off.

Lower interest rates decrease the cost of borrowing, which can boost economic activity and oil demand.

Some analysts cautioned about being overly bullish as expected weakness in some macroeconomic data from the US could still indirectly hurt oil demand in the near term.