The Medical Technologies and Pharmaceuticals (MTP) Roadmap – unlocking future growth opportunities for Australia
A changing global landscape
The global MTP industry is on the cusp of enormous growth globally due to a range of factors including ageing populations, the growth of emerging markets seeking better health services and unprecedented innovation in medical technologies and pharmaceuticals.
Australia is an important player in this sector and has a number of comparative advantages to grow its share of the global sector. However, there is fierce competition globally and our advantages may quickly erode if we don’t take action now to establish an ecosystem that will support the growth and innovation of the MTP sector in Australia.
A vision for Australian MTP sector
The focus of the MTP industry in Australia will rest on four main sectors in which Australia is well equipped to be an important player. By focusing on these sectors, Australia could become a force in the global MTP industry.
The key MTP sectors include:
- Smart devices, implants and bionics
- Accelerated pharmaceutical development
- Manufacturing high-value pharmaceuticals
- Diagnostics and informatics products and services.
Enabling the vision
The opportunities for Australia are immense not just in terms of the potential benefit to the Australian economy through future jobs and export earners, but also because Australians will benefit from better and more cost-effective health products and services as a flow on effect from a thriving domestic MTP industry.
To implement the roadmap, there will need to be close cooperation between federal and state governments over health policies and regulations as well as cooperation with research facilities and private industries to ensure the ecosystem supports innovation and growth.
The roadmap involves a range of steps including setting up a coherent and uniform regulatory and health framework across all states, supporting private industry in its pursuit of MTP innovations, ensuring our future workforce has the STEM education and skills to work in this field, and ensuring a commercial focus so that research is targeted at outcomes with potential high commercial value.
To realise the full potential of the MTP sector, we need to facilitate:
- A nimble regulatory framework that addresses core issues
- A pipeline of professionals with experience in medical science as well as retraining programs for those with limited experience or STEM education
- Supporting research institutions focusing on innovative research with commercial applications
- Providing a range of support to start-ups and small businesses involved in MTP product development while attracting global MTP corporations to set up research and development arms in Australia.