Growth in export markets is driving a medtech manufacturing boom in Germany. Sales are forecast to increase by 5.3% in 2011, according to a survey conducted by German industry association BVMed among member companies.
"Almost 80% of companies participating in the survey expect 2011 sales to exceed the results of 2010," says BVMed Director General and board member Joachim M. Schmitt. However, rising raw materials and transportation costs are affecting margins, he adds.
Germany continues to rank favourably as a business location. Survey participants praised the level of patient care, world-class infrastructure and fast market approval times. Weaknesses include reimbursement issues and obstacles to innovation stemming from a rampant bureaucracy and statutory health insurance policies.
It's interesting to compare and contrast this overview with an analysis of the US medtech industry's strengths and weaknesses by MD+DI Editor in Chief Heather Thompson. Across the pond, high margins and a thirst for innovation compete with regulatory unpredictability and the forthcoming medical device excise tax on the plus and minus sides of the ledger.