Hostile UK market deterring med-tech investment

A survey of UK medical technology companies has highlighted the slow rate of growth in sales and investment within the UK. With a 2.7% growth in UK sales, compared to a 7.7% increase in exports, in the first half of 2006. Only 54% of companies surveyed said they had experienced any growth in revenue from UK sales, while 100% of exporters experienced growth.

The ABHI/Ernst & Young Business Trends Survey is the first to measure the impact of the Supply Chain Excellence Programme (SCEP) and other recent NHS events on the UK med-tech market.  ABHI Director General John Wilkinson said:

"These worrying trends underpin the concerns that my members have about the state of the UK market and the procurement policies that are forcing med-tech companies overseas. The SCEP has contributed to this trend, and it is an indictment of this and other government policies which stifle innovation that the UK market has become a hostile place for innovative start-ups and SMEs. If this continues the UK economy is in danger of losing out on investment and the high value-added jobs that this sector creates."

The Association of British Healthcare Industries conducted a broad survey of its membership with the support of Healthcare Industries Taskforce Chief executive Sir Christopher O'Donnell and Ernst & Young.

Read the full survey:

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Notes to editors

• The Association of British Healthcare Industries (ABHI) is the lead trade association for the medical devices and systems industry (manufacturers of medical devices, equipment and consumables and other suppliers to the medical community.  For further details contact 0207 787 3060 or visit

• Ernst and Young contributed support in the collation of responses to the survey, providing aggregated data on a confidential basis.

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