The pharmaceutical industry in Belarus is a burgeoning area for foreign investment, with the government keen to attract investment into, or to privatise, at least six of the largest state-run pharmaceutical companies in the country.
An indication of the potential in the sector is that gross retail pharmaceutical sales grew 18% year-on-year in 2008 (to US $540 million), while the value of manufacturing production increased by 12% to approximately US $200 million.
The country mainly produces generic medical drugs, with half sold in the republic, and half exported.
In 2009, the Government restructured its largest pharmaceutical manufacturer Borimed (Borisovskiy Zavod Meditsinskikh Preparatov) into a joint-stock company and is actively seeking investors, with interest reported by companies in Europe and India.
The healthcare system is a matter of pride for Belarus, with the World Health Organisation ranking it 53rd in the world. Private pharmacies are present in Belarus but around two-thirds are still state-run, the largest being Belpharmacia, with 1,600 stores across country.