FRIDAY, AUGUST 3, 2018, KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health (MOH) organised the country’s renowned business matching, International Sourcing Programme (INSP), recently in conjunction with Association of Private Hospitals of Malaysia International Healthcare(APHM) Conference and Exhibition.
The INSP took place at Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre (KLCC) on 31 July 2018 and saw 215 business meetings arranged for 58 Malaysian companies with 23 foreign buyers. The buyers were from 11 countries mainly from Asia such as India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Philippines, Indonesia, Pakistan and Bhutan. Products of interest sourced by buyers included hospital furniture, syringes, catheters, medical gloves and healthcare services.
According to Mr. Abu Bakar Yusof, Director of Lifestyle & Life Sciences Section MATRADE, the INSP is one of the initiatives by MATRADE identified to enhance Malaysia’s position as the sourcing hub for medical devices. "Local manufacturers of medical devices need an effective platform such as the INSP to explore and expand their export business," he said.
The meetings resulted with potential sales of RM 86.24 million generated. Products that were much sought after were medical consumables such as catheters, syringes as well as medical gloves. In terms of sales composition by markets, India registered the highest sourcing value of RM 19.61 million, followed by Bhutan (RM 15.73 million) and Myanmar (RM 11.61 million).
In driving the sector's growth, Mr Abu Bakar urged local manufacturers of medical devices to have a single platform to represent the local industry. “For many years, we have witnessed the positive impact of the INSP to the Malaysian manufacturers. We hope for such private sector-led platform to be an impetus to develop and nurture more local manufacturers for the export markets,” Abu Bakar said.
In 2017, Malaysia recorded a new high in exports of medical devices, growing by 24.9 per cent to reach RM19.78 billion as compared to 2016. For the first five months of this year, exports of medical devices grew by 10 per cent to RM8.87 billion as against same period of last year.