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India’s MedTech sector gears up for golden decade with new policies and growth initiatives

2024 promises to be a transformative year for Indian MedTech as the industry’s focus remains on developing intelligent tools that expand access, improve patient care, and empower end users.

The Medical Technology (MedTech) sector in India is poised for an upward-moving journey in 2024, buoyed by recent policy initiatives. With the recent unveiling of the National Single Window System and the National Medical Devices Policy 2023, the sector is on the brink of a golden era.

In the inaugural week of 2024, India introduced the National Single Window System to facilitate the simplification of Medical Device Imports. Launched by India’s CDSCO, the ‘National Single Window System (NSWS)’ aims to streamline the import process for medical devices, offering a comprehensive platform for approvals. This initiative strives to establish a centralized platform for investors, ultimately enhancing the overall ease of doing business.

The size of the Indian medical devices market is estimated at USD 11 Bn and is expected to grow to USD 50 Bn by 2025 and the sector has been growing steadily at a CAGR of 15 percent over the last 3 years. We have seen earlier that the introduction of the National Medical Devices Policy 2023 has been considered to be a major leap forward. It got a robust response from all stakeholders. These measures will go on to further support the growth curve towards 2025 and beyond.

Budget allocations and policy adjustments must guarantee the industry’s adherence to the most stringent standards of voluntary quality management systems, embracing a global perspective, and securing a significant share of global Capital Medical equipment.

To encourage the MedTech industry to flourish, India needs to rationalize its complex tax structure, especially the EXIM duty structure. It is encouraging to see that India is trying hard to harmonize and ally the domestically developed quality standards and regulations with the best of global standards. India’s MedTech has been growing faster than the global industry which is growing at the rate of 4-6 per cent. While the market for medical devices is growing rapidly in the country with the increasing burden of non-communicable diseases and hospitalization cases, India is hugely dependent on imports for sourcing medical devices, particularly complex and high-end ones. There is a need for contemporary policy interventions and support to transform India from an import-friendly to an export-confident Indian MedTech country. Critical policy interventions for the Indian MedTech industry include enhancing quality regulations to meet global standards, providing incentives for achieving and surpassing international benchmarks, and promoting indigenous products through awareness campaigns and strategic initiatives.

Reduction of the GST rate could enhance the accessibility and affordability of quality medical services for patients. We must also explore the scope of Production Linked Incentive (PLI) schemes, simplifying approval procedures, and targeting USD 1 trillion in exports by 2025.

As the industry continues to evolve, the Indian MedTech industry must continue to invest in research & development, adapt to changing market conditions, and prioritize patient safety and data security for continuous success. Collectively, the emphasis should be on ensuring the safety, quality, and effectiveness of medical devices in India, which will positively impact public health. We look forward to witnessing substantial growth in the upcoming years, striving to realize the vision of 2047 – India@100. As India stands at the threshold of the Golden Decade of MedTech, we are also confident that this sector will not just grow but set a benchmark globally.

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