Israel has the largest medical device market in the Middle East region. Much of the market, just under 83%, is supplied by imports, and a significant portion of these in value terms are dominated by highend products falling under the diagnostic imaging apparatus category. It also has important domestic manufacturing capabilities, with just under 300 medical device companies in the country, according to Ministry of Health estimates.
Israel spends around 7.8% of total GDP on healthcare in 2013, and per capita spending rates are considered high by regional and world standards. Much of spending is in the public sector and the government has made allowances in recent years to expand the number of services and treatments offered by public health insurance programmes. However, the country also has a rapidly growing elderly demographic that is contributing to rising healthcare costs and the burden of non-communicable diseases.
Israel remains one of the most attractive investment opportunities for multinational firms in the Middle East, with GE establishing an R&D centre in the country in 2011. Israeli medical device firms are also prime targets for mergers and acquisitions, as illustrated by US-based Spectranetics' acquisition of Israel's Upstream Peripheral Technologies and US-based EndoChoice's decision to merge with Israel's Peer Medical, both in January 2013.
Espicom estimates the medical device market in Israel is worth US$1,099.4mn in 2013, equal to US$141 per capita. The market is expected to expand at a CAGR of 7.4% during the forecast period, which should see it reach US$1,570.9mn, or US$186 per capita, by 2018.