World champion in exports
Pharmaceuticals are also a driving force behind Belgium’s economy, representing more than a tenth of its total exports. In 2016, the sector exported EUR 40.7 billion in medicines and vaccines, nearly reaching 2015’s record value of EUR 41.01 billion. “Our unique location in Europe, easy access to international markets and excellent infrastructure for the distribution of pharmaceuticals are the main reasons for this success,” Rutten points out.
Some remarkable facts and figures about Belgium’s pharma exports:
- nearly half of the exports (47.6%) is outbound to countries outside the EU;
- around a fifth (20.6%) is destined for North American markets; and
- approximately one-eighth (12.6%) goes to markets in Asia.