114 trillion won in sales of bio and health in 2020 due to the growth of COVID-19 diagnostic devices

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Sales of in vitro diagnostic medical devices jumped 286%
Overseas awareness increased by 24.7%p
‘Made in Korea’ is more important than product performance

As the size of the medical device market such as COVID-19 diagnostic kits grew, the domestic bio and health industry sales increased by more than 10% in 2020. Overseas, not only cosmetics famous for ‘K-beauty’, but also medicines and medical devices awareness has risen significantly.

The Korea Health Industry Development Institute announced on the 18th that in 2020, the first year of COVID-19, the domestic bio and health industry sales amounted to 114.73 trillion won, an increase of 10.8% from the previous year. Sales by sector were △pharmaceuticals 41,33 trillion won, cosmetics 40,119.8 billion won, and medical devices 33,578.1 billion won. In particular, medical device sales, which were recorded at 23.40 trillion won in a pilot survey in 2019, surged 43.4% in just one year. Sales of in vitro diagnostic medical devices such as COVID-19 diagnostic kits jumped 286% to record 6.908.2 billion won.

The overseas export of the COVID-19 diagnostic kit has greatly increased the awareness of ‘Made in Korea’. As a result of a survey conducted by the Health Industry Promotion Agency on 6,240 general consumers and 235 related industry experts from 15 countries in November last year, 65.8% of Korean bio-health products were aware of specific products. It increased by 24.7 percentage points from 41.2 percent before COVID-19. In particular, Germany, where awareness of Korean bio/health products before Corona 19 was only 35.4%, jumped 31.3 percentage points to 66.7%. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) rose from 54.3% to 89.2% and India from 47.5% to 87.9%.

When asked about the countries leading the global bio and health industry, Korea ranked 6th out of 13 pharmaceutical and medical device countries, 4th out of 11 cosmetic countries, and 5th out of 13 medical service countries, and all three fields were included in the upper middle. The Health Industry Promotion Agency explained, “As the export of quarantine products such as diagnostic kits increased due to COVID-19, the awareness of Korean products has increased.”

In addition, it was found that overseas consumers view the brand (28%) and the country of the brand (11.5%) as more important than price, product function and safety when choosing Korean bio/health products. An official from the Health Industry Promotion Agency said, “This phenomenon has been particularly noticeable in countries where exports of COVID-19 prevention products have increased or where Korean cosmetics are famous.”

Park So-young reporter




Balance to see the world, Hankook Ilbo Copyright © Hankookilbo

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