CS Market ResearchThe Dental Equipment Market Overview in China
By Shuyu Sun, Seth PierrepontSeptember 20, 2005
There has always been a shortage of manpower, materials and financial resources fordental care in China. As many Chinese are paying increasing attention to their appearance andhealth in the wake of their increased living standards, the demand for up-to-date dental servicesis growing.
Of China’s 1.3 billion plus people, 50 percent of the adults and 70 percent of thechildren have decayed tooth problems, and over 90 percent of the people have periodontaldisease. According to the Ministry of Health, there are approximately 38,000 registered dentistsand 34 dental schools; the proportion of dentists to the population is only 1:33,000, comparedwith 1:4,000 in developed countries (1:1,600 in America; 1:800 in Sweden). As a result, in thenext 10-20 years, China needs to construct 10 times the number of current dental hospitals tokeep its figures internationally competitive and also, more importantly, to provide the Chinesepeople with dental treatment and protection. Although there is no solid data about the currentmarket size of dental equipment, according to a source from the State Food and DrugAdministration (SFDA), China has witnessed a steady growth in this market sub-sector over thepast 20 years and the current market size is estimated around US$150 million.
The economic growth achieved over the last 20 years since China’s reform and open doorpolicy has substantially enhanced people’s living standards, particularly in metropolitan areasand coastal regions. With the increase of people’s income coupled with efforts by thegovernment, healthcare institutions, and businesses, the demand has been growing for oralhealthcare services and products. As a result, the demand for new and high-tech dentalequipment is also growing.Apart from the enhancement of people’s awareness of oral health care and increasedincome, the increase of special dental hospitals or clinics has also contributed the growingdemand for dental equipment. According to the China Stomatological Association, China’sspecial oral hospitals or clinics have reached over 10,000, and in Beijing alone there are about1,200. All the new hospitals and clinics need to be equipped with basic or high-end dentalequipment in order to provide quality service and treatment. The older ones will also need theirequipment updated in order to remain competitive. As the standards of the Chinese dentalindustry rise so does the demand for dental equipment.With the opening of Chinese markets, virtually all kinds of dental equipment and devices,from low to high-end models, can be found in the country. The expansion of trade shows alsoserves as evidence of the growth of China’s dental market. The 10
annual Sino-Dental 2005,generally believed to be the largest international dental show in Asia, drew more than 500international exhibitors from 20 different countries including Austria, Finland, France, Germany,Italy, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Switzerland, and the U.S. For the past 10 years this show hasplayed an active role in introducing foreign advanced technologies, reinforcing the academic