GDP grew at 6% in Q3 2015, the fastest to date in 2015, bringing growth in the first three quarters to 5.6%, down from 6% in the same period in 2014. Domestic demand helped boost the economy, partly offsetting the drag from slower export growth. Household consumption increased at a faster pace at 6.1% in the first three quarters compared with 5.6% a year ago.

Government spending also accelerated, with public construction rising 11.5% in the first three quarters, up from 7.2% in the same period in 2014. In politics, the latest Pulse Asia survey showed the approval and trust ratings for President Benigno Aquino and Vice President Jejomar Binay improved in Q4 2015. Vice President Binay’s high ratings are expected to boost his prospects in the forthcoming presidential election. President Aquino signed the 3.002 trillion peso (US$63.5 billion) national budget for 2016. The Department of Education received the biggest allocation of 436.5 billion pesos (US$9.24 billion), while the Department of Health received 128.5 billion pesos (US$2.72 billion).

The pharmaceutical market is valued at 152 billion pesos (US$3.22 billion), with 8.5% growth as of MAT November 2015. The ethical market, comprising around 74% or 112 billion pesos (US$2.37 billion) of the market, grew by +9.9% and the proprietary market by +4.9%. All therapeutic classes grew positively. National companies continued to grow at +14% in MAT November 2015, with multinationals at +4% for the same period. In the lead-up to national elections in May 2016, government tenders showed significant increases in 2015. The rise in government healthcare spending is expected to continue in 2016. The six largest drugstore chain accounts showed positive growth in the 2015 financial year, mainly driven by branch expansions. The top chains opened a total of 167 branches in 2015 and have expanded their footprint across the nation, with 25% of their new stores in the National Capital Region.

Zuellig Pharma Philippines

Zuellig Pharma’s Drugstore Merchandising Program (DMP) continues to expand with new brands being enrolled by an increasing number of clients. The DMP chain drugstore branch coverage has also increased rapidly, allowing wider monitoring of product movements across the country. Patient Solution services have grown as more therapeutic areas, such as oncology, critical care and dermatology, have been included. These innovative patient programs not only seek to improve patient adherence and compliance, they also aim to improve access and affordability. Meanwhile, retail trade channel partnerships will extend implementation, reaching more communities and creating greater scale for the Zuellig Pharma Mass Vaccination Program.