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Pharmaceutical industry in Singapore - statistics & facts

Singapore is one of the leading biomedical and pharmaceutical hubs in Asia. Through the government’s Biomedical Sciences (BMS) initiative that was launched in June 2000, Singapore has been able to attract both foreign and private investors that have moved the industry forward. The support of the government such as through funding research and development on biomedical and related sciences has also contributed to the development of the industry.  

 The BMS initiative and pharmaceutical industry 

 The Biomedical Sciences (BMS) initiative focused on boosting industries such as pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical technology, and health care services. It aimed to make these industries combined as one of the key foundations and driving forces of Singapore’s national economy. This initiative has had a positive impact on the pharmaceutical industry in particular, and has led to the advancement of drug discovery, development, and clinical research. Through this, the manufacturing output of the pharmaceutical and biological industry in Singapore has been valued in the billions since 2010.

Following the BMS initiative, the government of Singapore completed the first stage construction of the medical innovation and development center, Biopolis Hub, in 2005. In the following years, significant resources were invested in it to progress clinical research for different biomedical disciplines and attract foreign and private business investments. Singapore has been leveraging on these investments to advance its pharmaceutical industry and attract international companies to set up their manufacturing and research and development establishments there. Now, Singapore is home to several of the world’s major pharmaceutical companies such as Abbot, GlaxoSmithKline, and Lonza. This has also resulted in the increasing number of employees in the pharmaceutical industry, strengthening the commitment to the initiative.

Pharmaceutical industry outlook in Singapore

   Owing to active support from the government through various investments, the pharmaceutical industry in Singapore has significantly expanded. Since the introduction of the government initiative and inbound investments, the trade balance in the pharmaceutical industry has remained positive and has grown steadily. Singapore is among a few countries worldwide whose pharmaceutical export value far exceeded the import value. Also, the industrial production index for pharmaceuticals and biological products has been showing an upward trend since 2010. Considering the government’s large investment in the industry and current industry performance, the outlook for the pharmaceutical industry in Singapore may continue to grow.


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