RUSSIAN DRUG MARKET EXPERIENCING GROWTH

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The Russian pharmaceutical market increased by 35 per cent in 2005 to $9 billion, according to a report issued by the Russian market research firm DSM Group. This places Russia in 12th place globally by retail market capacity.

Foreign companies have also increased sales by boosting their manufacturing sites in Russia, noted the report. Hungary's Gedeon Richter and Slovenia's KRKA recently built production facilities near Moscow, and Sebria's Hemopharm is constructing a plant in Obninsk, in the country's Kaluga Region.

Domestic drugs -- which in general are significantly cheaper than imported medications -- also saw their volume of sales increase in 2005. Russian drugmakers Pharmstandard and Nizhpharm were among the country's top-ranked producers.