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The pharmaceutical industry in Brazil: Is innovation the next step for the domestic industry?


*Corresponding author
1. Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Technology Centre, Chemistry School – Doctorate in Chemical and Biochemical Processes (on-going).,UFRJ, Centro de Tecnologia, Bloco E, Ilha do Fundão, Rio de Janeiro, RJ 21941-909, Brazil
2. Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Technology Centre, Chemistry School, UFRJ, Centro de Tecnologia, Bloco E,Ilha do Fundão, Rio de Janeiro, RJ 21941-909, Brazil


The so-called “pharmerging markets” have been the driving force behind the global growth of the pharmaceutical industry. Brazil is highlighted as one of the only countries with a population of more than 190m that has a universal health care system. After the regulation of the generic market, pharmaceutical groups have shown significant growth rates. However, the pressure surrounding competition among generics should incite a change in strategy by trying to create market differentiation via innovative products. Therefore, the present article examines the trajectory and behaviour of Brazilian pharmaceutical companies with regard to the threats and opportunities ahead.


It comes as no surprise that emerging markets have been driving the growth of pharmaceutical industry throughout the world. According to IMS Consulting Group, the growth forecast in the “pharmerging markets” is in the order of 11-16 percent per year, whereas in the developed countries, such as the USA and Europe, the rate is at around 0-3 percent.
Specifically regarding Brazil, the optimism is much greater and even justified. The country has a stable democracy, solid institutions, sustainable growth despite external turbulence, and is undergoing a historic moment of social inclusion: between 2002 and 2008, no less than 19.4m people crossed over from the poverty line (1). Life expectancy in Brazil also increased significantly, reaching 73.5 years in 2010 (2). With regard to the Brazilian business environment, the country has a stable intellectual property system that is committed to the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) agreement. The regulatory framework of the industry has been rapidly aligning itself with those of major countries and the development agencies offer credit lines in accordance with the ...

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