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Drugmakers lead job growth in manufacturing sector
  • By So Jae-hyeon
  • Published 2017.12.12 15:12
  • Updated 2017.12.12 15:12
  • comments 0

The pharmaceutical industry has led the growth of jobs in the manufacturing sector, industry data showed Tuesday.

The annual growth of jobs at drugmakers stood at 3.1 percent between 2007 to 2016, almost double that of the total manufacturing sector at 1.7 percent, according to data from the Korea Pharmaceutical and Bio-pharma Manufacturers’ Association. It analyzed statistics by the Bank of Korea, Statistics Korea, and the Korea Institute for Industrial Economics & Trade.

The job increase rate of the pharmaceutical industry was also higher than 2.4 percent annual job increase in the entire industries over the cited period. The pharmaceutical industry also achieved a rapid growth in revenue and total assets, which are the key indicators of growth.

In the past decade, the pharmaceutical industry’s combined revenue rose 9.2 percent, higher than that of the whole industries at 7 percent and the manufacturing sector’s, at 5.5 percent. The revenue growth rate of the pharmaceutical sector plummeted from 13.4 percent in 2007 to 2.5 percent in 2012 due to the government’s universal cut in drug prices in 2012. The revenue growth rate rebounded to 8 percent last year.

Over the same period, the average growth rate of total assets in the pharmaceutical sector was 13.1 percent, 5 percentage points higher than the whole industries’ 8.1 percent and the manufacturing sector’s 8.2 percent.

Drugmakers also performed well in exports. The pharmaceutical industry’s annual export growth rate has been higher than 10 percent every year over the past decade, ranking top in export growth among 45 manufacturing industries.

In the past decade, the pharmaceutical industry has achieved a 13.1 percent annual export growth on average, four times higher than the 3.3 percent recorded by both whole industries and the manufacturing sector. Export volume of the pharmaceutical sector drastically expanded by 201 percent to $3.15 billion last year from $1.45 billion in 2007.

“While Korea’s economic growth rate is forecast to mark 3 percent this year, the economic growth did not accompany job growth. So, the total industries face limitation in boosting economic activity,” the association said. “But our analysis proved that the pharmaceutical industry is achieving growth both in revenue and jobs. This trend is likely to continue,” it said.


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