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Growing population creates multibillion dollar trading floor for Arab Health

In an economy where negative financial news is ever-present, Arab Health continues to buck the trend.   The 2012 event is sold out, while the 2013 event is selling fast. Its Dubai World Trade Centre home is completely full. 

As an event for people to come together, Arab Health creates millions of dollars of business every year, with thousands of medical professionals furthering their careers.  It puts the Middle East firmly on the healthcare map. The event is buoyant, resilient and essential for trading, knowledge and meeting the medical industry. Such is its importance that attendees increasingly sign deals there, rather than use it as a research tool.

Indeed, in 2010 Siemens Healthcare, a longstanding partner of Arab Health, generated a single transaction worth US$69 million with the Iraqi Ministry of Health to rebuild healthcare services in its war-torn country. And then in 2011, there was another crystal clear example of how Arab Health helps make things happen: Shenzhen Mindray Bio-Medical Electronics signed $1.5m of business and made another $9m worth of new business contracts.

The event’s importance was evident even back in 1979, when Britain’s HRH Queen Elizabeth II visited, particularly impressed with plans for new hospitals in Dubai and Abu Dhabi and escorted by His Highness Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum.

The healthcare market in the GCC* is expected to triple within the coming years to reach USD $55 billion in 2020 – a year-on-year growth of 9%, according to a report released by KFH Research Limited.  The report also indicated that the estimated value of forthcoming GCC healthcare projects will reach $10billion alone, creating very real opportunities for the people and exhibitors who attend the event.  The rapid growth in population rate and the increment of expenditure per capita in the GCC on healthcare is considered to be the most important factor.

Arab Health’s humble beginnings belie the major medical force it has become.  It started 36 years ago, under canvas, on a patch of land next to a hotel in Dubai. 

The event, now, has a worldwide audience.  Sixty-five thousand visitors from 137 countries have helped make it into one of the world’s largest and most successful medical events.  Visitors come from diverse backgrounds - from general practitioners, hospital doctors, nursing staff to hospital managers, distributors or physiotherapists.

The event attracts a wide range of healthcare companies, services and products from across the globe, including the world’s leading manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors specialising in everything from medical technology, healthcare building technology, medical services, radiology and consulting services. 

Only one competitive exhibition compares; an event in Germany which covers a different geography and audience.  Indeed, the team at Arab Health attend the event to talk with their European market.

Year on year, Arab Health builds its conference portfolio, offering a scientific and educational platform that makes up the world’s largest multi-track Medical congress.  Each year, the 40+ team at Arab Health assess the specific requirements for the region and develop programmes to cater for the many types of delegates.  In 2011, four new conferences were launched, and in 2012, another five are being added.  It is also the only event in the region to offer such a wide range of good value, professionally developed Continuing Medical Educated (CME) accredited conferences.

Other spin-off products come under the Arab Health banner, including Informa Exhibition Life Sciences portfolio, which includes Mediconex and Africa Health, both healthcare exhibitions in Africa.

Simon Page, Managing Director, Informa Exhibition – Life Sciences Division, said, “We view the healthcare market in the MENA region to be one of the most attractive markets for healthcare investments in the world. 

“The healthcare market has experienced stellar growth over the last decade and is projected to maintain its growth momentum driven by a multitude of factors.  These could be demographic growth, high and expanding medical needs, more active investments by governments and private sector in the healthcare market, development of social welfare systems, introduction of private insurance market, increased healthcare regulation, introduction of compulsory health insurance in a number of countries – to name a few.”

*GCC - currently 6 Arab states, with 2 more invited to become members.

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