The rising cost of drug development is driving big pharmaceutical companies into emerging markets, according to an analysis from Frost & Sullivan.

According to their report, the level of healthcare coverage in Brazil, Russia, India and China has dramatically improved during the past few years, providing new opportunities for companies to successfully expand and sell their products.

Good economical infrastructure and a significant untapped market potential with a large population are the major incentives.

Frost & Sullivan research analyst Swetha Shantikumar said that companies need to address the varying medical requirements of each of these markets.

“There will be an overall shift in the pharmaceutical industry from a very western-centric model to a global one,” Shantikumar said.

Vaccines, biologics, over-the-counter candidates and generics are the principal cash cows within emerging markets.

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By GlobalData

But companies may stumble in some healthcare systems – China, for example, suffers from weak intellectual property laws, escalating drug costs and low reimbursement rates for drugs.