Denmark’s Stronghold in the Life Sciences
Restructuring and growth set the tone for Danish and Swedish life science, particularly in the Medicon Valley region that crosses Øresund. In recent years, the supporting structure for the life sciences, which is both innovative and promotes exportation, has undergone important developments.
The conditions are ripe for the life sciences to become a sector with a stabilising effect through the next recession. In fact, employment and job security in Medicon Valley is on the rise. The latest statistical evidence (2017) shows that there were 44.000 employees in Medicon Valley.
Denmark’s Life Sciences Exports Achieve Record High Levels
Denmark and Sweden’s life sciences exports are at an all-time high. Doubling over the past 10 years, Danish life sciences exports are now worth close to 106 billion DKK. The country’s life sciences exports now account for more than 15 per cent of Denmark’s total exportation of goods; this is the highest share recorded between 2008-2018. Keeping pace, Swedish life sciences exports achieved a record high after rising 10.6 per cent in 2018 alone. This trend is expected to continue into 2019, as new figures from Statistics Denmark show that the pharmaceutical industry’s share of industrial production is hovering at 20 per cent. And, exports of medicinal products, especially in the second quarter of 2019, have grown almost twice as fast as other European countries.
After a rather weak 2017, marked by little growth, Danish life sciences exports rose significantly in 2018 – increasing by 7.7 per cent.
As Denmark’s largest export market, life sciences exports to the United States in 2018 were valued at 28 billion DKK, a 21 per cent increase compared to 2017. After the US, China is the industry’s largest export market. Medicinal products and devices worth 8.7 billion DKK were exported to the Chinese market, albeit the increase from 2017 – 1 per cent – was minimal. Yet, when viewed from a long-term perspective, exports to China have risen substantially. The average annual growth between 2008-2018 was 23 per cent.