Korea's medical equipment industry
Korea's medical equipment industry took shape in the early 1970s when X-ray systems were first localized. Before then, consumable medical supplies,such as disposable syringes and bandages, were the major locally produced items. In the 1980s, the governmet launched a successful policy to localize highly advanced diagnostic equipments such as ultrasound diagnostic systems, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) equipment, computerized tomography (CT) equipment.
Entering the 1990s, the government regarded the medical equipment industry as the strategic area to challenge and has constantly induced local manufacturers to develop new, up-to-date items in the sector. At the moment, high-end items such as digital X-ray systems, MRI, CT and 3-dimensional ultrasound diagnostic systems are being locally produced.
Encouraged by big acceptance from abroad for their technology products, domestic makers are spurring the promotion of their goods to more than 50 countries, including the U.S.A. and European nations.
The rapid development of Korea's electro-medical equipment industry in a short span of time stems from the following facts : first, abundant technical experts were secured by promoting in colleges and graduate schools the relevant subjects such as electronics and medical engineering.
Second, the electronic field in Korea, including semiconductors, industrial electronics and electronic parts, is as fully developed as that in advanced countries.
Third, the nation's economic development resulted in increase in the number of hospitals and swelling demand for medical equipment, creating a large local market. Fourth, domestic makers have successfully made inroads into overseas markets, thanks to their high reliability, thus providing unrivaled business opportunities.
Based on this market environment, domestic electro-medical equiment manufacturers now emphasize continued market exploration in overseas as well as at home.