The global Halal economy is worth trillions of dollars, and western corporations haven’t been oblivious to the plethora of available opportunities. Some of the world’s leading companies have launched their range of Halal products to gain a pie in the robustly expanding market.

Pharmaceuticals account for the second-largest revenue share in the global Halal market, next only to Halal food. The key factors driving the growth of the global Halal pharmaceuticals market include:

Rising Muslim Population

Muslims are the largest consumer base for Halal products and services. Increase in Muslim population is a direct driving force for the Halal economy. The world’s Muslim population is growing at a higher annual rate as compared to the global population. According to Pew Research Center, Muslims will grow more than twice as fast as the overall world population.

In the context of Halal pharmaceuticals, increasing Muslim population has meant that the consumer pool – which makes buying decisions – has also increased. And, with wider availability of Halal medicines, this consumer pool has the option to choose between Halal and non-Halal products.

Rising Awareness on Fulfilling Religious Obligations

Fulfilling religious obligations is an important part of Muslim identity. Rising awareness has been a key factor in driving demand for Halal products and services. The Halal pharmaceutical industry has also benefitted from this, and this trend is expected to only become stronger in the future.

Halal Pharma Certification and Availability of Wide Range of Halal Products

For a long time, Halal pharmaceuticals were shrouded in ambiguity over certification and compliance factors. MS 2424:2012 (P) – Halal pharma guideline developed by the Department of Standards Malaysia has served as a reference for the pharmaceutical industry. Malaysia is one of the most lucrative markets in the global Halal pharmaceutical landscape, both in terms of production of Halal medicines and consumption. The standardisation of the Halal pharmaceutical market has led to increased confidence among consumers around the globe.

Availability of a wide number of Halal pharmaceuticals has also meant that consumers today have wider options than ever before.

Halal Pharmaceuticals: The State of the Market

The global Halal pharmaceuticals market is concentrated in Middle East, North Africa, and Asia Pacific. These three regions are home to over 70% of world’s Muslim population. Halal pharmaceutical manufacturers are looking to bolster their presence in the region, however, owing to stringent compliance regulations, investment in R&D is of paramount importance.

The Halal pharmaceutical market is worth roughly $500 billion. The opportunities in this market are endless because a majority of consumer base is still purchasing generic drugs. The three leading countries in the Halal pharmaceutical markets are Malaysia, Indonesia, and Singapore. The Malaysian government is wooing foreign investors to set up manufacturing plants in Halal Industrial Parks in Penang.

Next year, the Halal pharmaceutical market is expected to gain more prominence in mainstream media, as a Halal vaccine is expected to be launched. The vaccine is being developed by the Malaysian Industry Development.

In addition to Malaysia, Indonesia, and Singapore, Brunei is expected to emerge as a lucrative market for Halal pharmaceuticals in the future. The country’s vast landscape and biodiversity make it an appealing place for Halal pharma manufacturers. As most of the compliance concerns are related to origin of materials used in Halal cosmetics, manufacturers can tap into the natural resources and offer high-quality, fully compliant Halal medicines to consumers all around the world.

Although the Halal pharmaceutical market is not at the same scale as Halal food or Halal finance market, it is expected to grow briskly in the next decade. It won’t be surprising if pharma companies won’t make a beeline to enter this highly lucrative market.

Source: Future Market Insights

Photo: Halal Pharma products (Credit: Unicity)

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