Thu, 26 Aug 2010

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia`s health equipment market is worth Rp22 trillion but it is still dominated by foreign products, according to the Association of Indonesian Health and Laboratory Equipment Traders.

"The country`s health and laboratory equipment market was worth Rp22 trillion in 2009 and is growing by up to 10 percent each year. However the market is still dominated by foreign companies," the association`s chairman for trade and agencies, Budi Prasetio, said here on Wednesday.

It`s been very difficult for the domestic health and laboratory equipment companies to develop and compete with the foreign companies due to lack of support from the government, he said.

"The government is not supporting. Its support to health equipment research and development activities is minimum. We have been struggling by ourselves," he said.

The government health facilities mostly have also preferred buying foreign products for their service. "It is difficult to ask hospitals to use domestically-produced equipment," he said.

Budi hoped in the future the government would give more support to domestic health and loboratory equipment research and development activities and limit the number of foreign companies operating in the sector especially in the government procurement sector.

"If bidding is fully open and foreign players could freely enter, well it would be impossible for us to stand," he said.

The deputy for development strategy and policy at the Institute for Government Procurement Policy, Agus Prabowo, said that the government had so far tried to expand the role of the national companies in the government goods/services procurement.

According to the new procurement regulation namely Presidential Regulation Number 54 of 2010, foreign companies` participation is limited to a procurement value worth minimally Rp20 billion.

The requirement is twice higher than in the previous regulation which was set at only Rp10 billion. "The hike is intended for increasing the use of domestic products," he said.(*)