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Pharmaceutical Packaging Demand Growing

Worldwide pharmaceutical packaging demand is projected to increase 6.3% annually to more than $30 billion in 2009, with the United States and Western Europe expected to account for 70% of global sales, according to a study by The Freedonia Group Inc.

Meanwhile, China should provide the strongest growth opportunities because of its rapidly expanding pharmaceutical manufacturing capabilities and a government program designed to upgrade the quality and integrity of the nation's medicines.

In its World Pharmaceutical Packaging study, the Cleveland-based group projects that the U.S. will remain the largest consumer of pharmaceutical packaging as it develops new drug therapies with specialized packaging needs, while growth in Western European demand will reflect upgraded government standards that require unit dose and higher barrier packaging for many types of medications. Elsewhere, an easing of government-imposed drug price controls should favorably impact pharmaceutical packaging sales in Japan.

Prefillable inhalers and syringes should generate the fastest growth opportunities among all pharmaceutical packaging products based on performance advantages in drug delivery. Plastic bottles are projected to represent the largest demand share because of their low cost, versatility, availability and ongoing quality and design improvements.

Expanding applications for solid and liquid oral medications is expected to create above-average growth opportunities for these containers throughout the world. Pharmaceutical blister packaging will generate strong growth in global demand based on its adaptability to unit-dose, clinical-trial, compliance, institutional and over-the-counter drugs.

The world market for pharmaceutical closures and accessories is forecast to grow 5.1% annually to $9.5 billion in 2009.

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