The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) said Tuesday that the domestic bio-industry production saw a steady growth last year, thanks to the increase in medical devices and services.
A ministry-sponsored survey on 980 domestic bio-industry companies showed that the production of bio-industry reached 8.87 trillion won ($8.13 billion) in 2016, up 4.4 percent from the previous year.
|Source: Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy|
According to the survey, the biomedical equipment, bio-service industry and biochemistry and energy saw the most robust growth, while bio-food industrial output, which accounts for 32.9 percent of bio-industry production, fell due to sluggish exports.
Regarding bio-industry exports, the industry achieved overseas sales of 4.44 trillion won ($4.06 billion), up 3.7 percent from the previous year, with trade surplus reaching 2.98 trillion won. The ministry explained that exports of bio-commissioned products and agency services, therapeutic antibodies and hormones increased, while exports of food additives decreased.
The survey also showed that the number of employees increased to 41,899, up 4 percent, while the investment in the industry was 1.95 billion won, up 13.9 percent. The investment ratio for research and development and facilities stood at 67.3 percent and 32.7 percent, respectively.
“The bio-industry is growing steadily every year, and this survey shows the prospect of biopharmaceutical products such as therapeutic antibodies and cell-based therapeutics is prominent,” a ministry official said. "The ministry will expand support for R&D, production and export of companies so that biotechnology can contribute to our economy and employment.”
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