Healthtech in the GCC Countries: Focus on Infrastructure and Export Capabilities

Faces of Digital Health

Healthtech in the GCC Countries: Focus on Infrastructure and Export Capabilities

April 9, 2024

Healthtech in the GCC Countries: Focus on Infrastructure and Export Capabilities

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) brings together six Arab countries – Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates 

When one reads about the GCC countries, there’s nothing but the impression of prosperity: high investments, determination, and enthusiasm in tech-supported healthcare. 

The spending on healthcare by the GCC governments is on an astronomical rise. From a regionwide US$2.4 billion in 2016, it rose to more than US$30 billion in 2021 and is projected to surpass US$104 billion this year, according to a report from the UAE Ministry of Economy. 

In this episode, Pilar Fernandez Hermida  International Go-to-Market expert with 20+ years of experience launching sales & partner ecosystem strategies, talks about the potential of the Middle East and MENA region for healthtech companies, the culture in the Middle East, how to interpret different style of communication here, what are the common entrepreneurial misconceptions, and where to find opportunities. Pilar says that the entrepreneurial spirit here is 10-times as strong as in the US, and that biotech and drug development are the next thing to watch for in the region.


Show notes:

  • [00:02:00] Pilar Fernandez Hermida, an expert in healthcare market strategies, shares insights from Abu Dhabi.
  • [00:04:00] Analysis of the healthcare infrastructure development in GCC post-pandemic.
  • [00:08:00] The role of expats in the Middle East’s healthcare transformation.
  • [00:10:00] Public-private partnerships as key opportunities.
  • [00:12:00] Cultural considerations for startups in the GCC.
  • [00:14:00] Misconceptions about the Middle Eastern healthcare market.
  • [00:18:00] Building long-term relationships in business.
  • [00:20:00] Navigating diverse cultural communication in healthcare.
  • [00:24:00] Comparing the entrepreneurial spirit in the Middle East with the U.S. and Europe.
  • [00:28:00] Strategic advice for healthcare entrepreneurs targeting the GCC.
  • [00:30:00] Importance of understanding regulations and digital maturity in MENA.
  • [00:32:00] Future potential in biotech and digital health in the GCC.
  • [00:36:00] The convergence of digital health and biotech.

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