Impact of South Korea on the Pharmaceutical Industry – Thematic Intelligence

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Impact of South Korea on the Pharmaceutical Industry Report Overview 

South Korea is the world’s 10th largest pharmaceutical market and considers the pharmaceutical industry a potential engine for the country’s future economic growth. South Korea is a market that offers significant potential for big pharma manufacturing, with domestic companies dominating the marketed product landscape as encouraged by government policy. Domestic pharmaceutical companies dominate the South Korean market, with the domestic industry expected to continue to grow through the encouragement provided by the South Korean government in the form of policies promoting domestic production of medicines.

The impact of South Korea on the pharmaceutical industry report provides an assessment of the major industry, regulatory, macroeconomic, and technology trends shaping the South Korea pharma industry. It provides detailed analysis of deals, clinical trials, marketed and pipeline products, and contract manufacturing. It also provides an overview of key regulatory and market access information, market drivers and barriers, and key players in the South Korean pharma sector.

Impact of South Korea on the Pharmaceutical Industry Trends

Industry Trends: The country has significant growth potential for biosimilar development. It is home to major biosimilar companies such as Celltrion, Samsung Bioepis, LG Chem, GC Green Cross, Chong Kun Dang, CJ Healthcare, and Dong-A ST. South Korean manufacturers have emerged as prominent players in the emerging market for biosimilars—not only in their home market but on an increasingly global scale. With its progressive economic growth, stable political structure, aging patient populations, and increasing governmental, private, and foreign investments, South Korea has favorable conditions to remain and expand as an advanced pharmaceutical research center. Furthermore, the increasing investments in the Healthtech is improving the country’s digital health space, further, likely to boost the pharmaceutical industry as well.

Regulatory Trends: The regulatory framework in South Korea for governing pharmaceuticals is administered by the MFDS, which replaced the Korea FDA in 2013. Drug approvals are issued by the MFDS’s central office in Osong. Since 2013, existing approvals must be reviewed and renewed every five years.  New regulations and restrictive P&R policies are affecting the strategic approaches being pursued by players from both local manufacturers and foreign companies. South Korea’s government has invested heavily in the domestic biotech and biopharma sectors. Furthermore, since 2012, the sale of over-the-counter (OTC) drugs such as cold and digestive medicines, antipyretics, analgesics, and pain relief patches in stores other than a pharmacy has been legal in South Korea. Convenience stores sell around a dozen OTC drugs. 

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Impact of South Korea on the Pharmaceutical Industry Analysis

South Korean pharmaceutical market was valued at $20.6 billion in 2013 and increased to $27.9 billion in 2020 at a CAGR of 4.4%, with continued investment from the government and pharmaceutical sector. The market value is forecast to increase to $35.1 billion by 2030.

The most common deal type was strategic alliances, followed by contract service agreements (CSAs). This is in line with general deal-making trends in pharma, where there tend to be more partnerships and funding compared to CSAs. 

The impact of South Korea on the pharmaceutical industry report also covers –

  • Top 10 Licensing Agreements Involving South Korea by Value, 2018–22
  • M&A trends
  • Capital rising trends

South Korea Pharmaceutical Market Overview ($ billions), 2013–30

South Korea Pharmaceutical Market Overview ($ billions), 2013–30

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Impact of South Korea on the Pharmaceutical Industry by Clinical Trials

South Korea had 5,842 clinical trials identified in the region since January 2019.  Oncology, CNS, and infectious disease are consistently the therapy areas with the most clinical trials. Infectious disease is the second leading therapy area in clinical trials in South Korea. In 2020, the infectious disease therapy area saw a significant increase in clinical trials, as would be expected due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with high numbers of infectious disease clinical trials continuing in 2021.

South Korea Pharmaceutical Industry Analysis by Clinical Trials, 2023 (%)

South Korea Pharmaceutical Industry Analysis by Clinical Trials, 2023 (%)

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Competitive Landscape

Domestic pharmaceutical companies dominate in South Korea, outdoing the sales and market shares of the international pharmaceutical companies located in South Korea. The key companies in the South Korean pharmaceutical industry are GSK, Celltrion, Novartis, Pfizer, Chong Kun Dang Pharmaceutical, Yuhan, Daewoong, and Samsung Biologics among others.

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Impact of South Korea on the Pharmaceutical Industry Outlook

Page Count 78
Key Trends Industry Trends and Regulatory Trends
Key Deal Types Strategic Alliances, Mergers and Acquisitions, Contract Service Agreement, Capital Raisings
Key Therapy Areas Oncology, CNS, Infectious Disease, Metabolic Disorders, Respiratory, and Others
Key Companies GSK, Celltrion, Novartis, Pfizer, Chong Kun Dang Pharmaceutical, Yuhan, Daewoong, and Samsung Biologics

Reasons to Buy

  • See what trends are shaping the South Korean pharma market and driving innovation, including key government policies and strategic initiatives.
  • Get an analysis of South Korea’s strong manufacturing and outsourcing sector, including plans to further strengthen these capabilities.

Table of Contents

  • 1 Executive Summary
  • 2 Introduction
  • 3 Trends
  • 4 Value Chain
  • 5 Market Analysis
  • 6 Clinical Trials
  • 7 Marketed Products
  • 8 Pipeline Products
  • 9 Contract Manufacturing in South Korea
  • 10 Regulatory and Market Access
  • 11 Market Drivers and Barriers
  • 12 Companies
  • 13 Appendix
  • 14 Contact Us

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