Biotechnology sector of India is not a new one. It has been nourished since its inception by national government. Nevertheless, this industry is still in the infant stage. Currently, India is investing in academics and existing industry's infrastructure considerably to expedite the overall growth of sector.
Biopharma sector enjoys the major share of the total biotech market. It comprises of therapeutics, vaccines, animal health care products and diagnostics. Notably, whenever any Indian biopharma company releases its products in market, MNCs reduce prices for these products to vie. The bioindustrial segment consists of organic amino acids, enzymes, yeast and yeast-based products and account for over 10% of the total market share. These products, actually, were first off the mark from the biotech industry of India.
In India most of the bio drugs and diagnostic products are for the government and private sector hospitals and patients. The second group of buyers of biotechnology products and biomolecules are the research institutes and pharmaceutical companies. The emerging trend of corporate players establishing diagnostic centers in small towns and rural areas is providing opportunities for the import of automated systems and imported reagents.
Patients and private and government hospitals are the main consumers of diagnostic products and bio drugs in India. Pharmaceutical companies and research institutes are the second set of consumers of biomolecules and biotechnology products. The evolving trend of establishing diagnostic centers in rural areas and small towns by corporate houses is giving the opportunities for the import of reagents and automated systems.
Indian biotech market is very promising. Though there is a great scope for investments and import in healthcare biotechnology sector of India still the industry is facing many challenges; first being inadequate IP (intellectual property) protection. India pledged to product patent by improving its patent law in 2005. Therefore, firstly, some entrepreneurs lead the industry and dispersed research supported by government. IP should be protected through proper implication is necessary for the development of product. Second challenge is that majority of the healthcare expense is "out of pocket expenditure". As a result, the new innovative drugs, which are costly and can't be afforded by Indian patients, are not sold in India. It has kept big honchos of global biotechnology sector away from Indian market. But, the increasing coverage in health insurance is changing the market.
Third challenge the industry facing is the shortage of biotechnology experts. Till recently, government institutes, in cooperation with private ones, conducted most of the biotech research. Now many education institutes, like schools and colleges, have introduced the courses in biotech.
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