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Emerging opportunities in Middle East healthcare

Article-Emerging opportunities in Middle East healthcare

Arab Health 2023 Salim Dahman - Dubai Healthcare City Authority
Dubai Healthcare City study reveals key sector trends and opportunities for MENA region’s health industry.

Dubai Healthcare City Authority (DHCA), the governing body of Dubai Healthcare City (DHCC), recently launched a whitepaper ‘Emerging Opportunities in Middle East Healthcare’ that reveals in-depth insights into the regional healthcare sector, with a special focus on the GCC.

The study, the latest initiative in DHCA’s mission to contribute to the development of the healthcare sector in line with Dubai’s goal to become one of the world’s top 10 healthcare destinations, underlines the growth of the GCC and wider MENA healthcare landscape over the past decade and shines a light on the opportunities for investors.

Key findings from the whitepaper forecast healthcare spending in the GCC will grow at a CAGR of 4.9 per cent to US$99.6 billion in 2023 from US$86.2 billion in 2020, with the UAE and Saudi Arabia commanding approximately 80 per cent share of the total spending.

The report highlights a renewed focus on healthcare as a holistic rather than a symptomatic issue, further amplifying opportunities in the preventive medicine sector, especially as the governments are increasingly aligned with World Health Organisation’s approach. Additionally, the whitepaper acknowledges recent regulatory changes in Dubai’s healthcare sector to improve efficiencies, and an increasing focus on private-public partnership projects, which Dubai Healthcare City is leading the way on, as a primary enabler of industry growth.

Commenting on the whitepaper launch, Salim Dahman, Marketing and Communication Director, DHCA, said: “Since DHCC was launched in 2002, we have dedicated our efforts to realise Dubai’s goals of becoming a global leader in healthcare and wellness. To be able to address market demand, it is vital to understand its realities, and this whitepaper will help us to cater to the needs of our partners and the wider healthcare industry.”

Additional key findings demonstrate the resilience of Dubai’s healthcare sector. Research shows that despite pandemic-related restrictions on global travel, Dubai doubled the number of health tourists in 2021, wherein spending by international patients during the year reached nearly US$198 million.

Underling DHCC’s role as a key contributor to the emirate’s diverse economic growth, the paper revealed that the freezone contributed Dh2.8 billion to Dubai’s GDP in 2021, a figure expected to reach Dh3.4 billion by 2030. It has emerged as a catalyst for the healthcare job market, as it has now facilitated the creation of 15,760 jobs in Dubai.

This article appears in the Daily Dose 2023. Read the full issue online today.

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