July 13, 2018

This article is extracted from Trade Mart magazine, a Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation (MATRADE) Publication. 

Consumable Medical Devices Market in Cuba

Cuba has significant domestic pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry; however, there is very little domestic production of medical equipment and disposables. Only the basic products such as optical lenses, surgical dressings, dental suppliers and some electro-medical equipment are being manufactured locally. The high-tech products are usually developed with overseas partners. All domestic production is, of course, directed and coordinated by the government.

Through MATRADE Miami’s engagement with MEDICuba S.A. in Havana, the State-Owned Enterprise has expressed their interest in identifying Malaysian suppliers that can export latex-based medical products such as surgical gloves, tubes, urinary catheters, condoms and others.

Cuba has a well-developed healthcare system with healthcare provided mainly by the government and to a much a lesser extent by the private sector. Unfortunately, it lacks resources and most hospitals and clinics rely on out-of-date equipment.

Imports supply over 85% of the consumable medical devices market led by China, followed by Italy and Spain. Economic growth will pick up in the coming decade due to the government’s incremental reforms and greater engagement with the global economy. Factors such as the increasing elderly population over 65 years old, the burden of non-communicable diseases, improving healthcare access, recent import performance and market barriers are driving this sector forward.

Cuba’s imports of products and services for commercial purposes are made by the State-Owned Companies with the authorisation from Ministerio de Comercio Exterior y la Inversion Extranjera (MINCEX)/Ministry of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment. The State-Owned Companies in Cuba would serve as a viable entry point for Malaysian companies interested to tap the Cuban consumer market. It is incumbent on suppliers to provide very competitive prices for mid-range quality products with good credit terms and other attractive value propositions.


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