Multinational Pharmaceutical Firms Enter China's Vaccine Market
China's infant vaccine market has significant potential and, coupled with the research efforts made by the Chinese government to prevent and treat severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), multinational pharmaceutical companies are finding the market especially attractive. China has said it will allocate approximately 1.2 billion yuan ($144 million) to establish disease prevention and treatment centers and improve disease prevention systems, and up to 2 billion yuan has been set aside for SARS treatment and prevention. Wang Huoxiang, secretary general of the Chinese Preventative Medical Association, forecasts that the country's vaccine market will grow about 15 percent annually, compared to a worldwide level of growth of about 10 percent annually. Aventis of France, MSD Pharmaceutical, and GlaxoSmithKline currently make up more than 50 percent of the Chinese vaccine market.