JLL strengthens healthcare offerings in GCC region as investor interest in sector increases

Professional services firm reveals it has recently won high-profile advisory project wins in Saudi Arabia and across the region

Following high-profile advisory project wins in Saudi Arabia and across the region, JLL, a leading professional services firm that specialises in real estate and investment management, has announced that it has strengthened its healthcare offering.

In a statement, JLL said that its healthcare team recently advised on a partnership between Al Murjan Group, a Saudi family business group, and Mediclinic Middle East, part of the UK’s Mediclinic International. This partnership will see the establishment of an international accredited private hospital with 200 beds in the city of Jeddah.

As per the terms of the agreement, Mediclinic Middle East will manage the hospital and support Al Murjan Group with its expertise and advisory services in planning, design and construction, with the commissioning of the hospital expected to open by the second quarter of 2022.

Additionally, JLL is growing its offering to respond to upcoming Public Private Partnerships (PPP) projects in Saudi Arabia, UAE and Oman, as it believes that these projects will attract interest from in international healthcare operators looking to partner with local investors and developers.

Thierry Delvaux, CEO of JLL MEA, said: “The region’s population has been rapidly growing, and over the past five years it has seen an average increase of 2.1% to reach approximately 56.2 million, according to Oxford Economics. This type of population growth is well above the global average growth rate of 1.1%, and therefore it is imperative that governments and the private sector continue to actively drive the advancement of healthcare infrastructure in the region.”

Governments across the Middle East have been investing heavily in expanding and upgrading their healthcare systems in recent years. However, according to JLL, they will need to adapt and evolve even faster, particularly given the need for greater focus on local healthcare capability development.

As part of the 2020 budget, Saudi Arabia’s government allocated 16.4% of its spending on the healthcare sector, while the UAE allocated $1.36 billion towards healthcare spending, a 26% increase from 2016.

“Regional governments are working actively to enhance the quality of their healthcare,” said Sandeep Sinha, the recently appointed new Head of Healthcare, Strategic Consulting at JLL MENA, who will oversee the growth of JLL’s healthcare practice in the region.

“This is a significant time for the industry, particularly with the increase of private investment into the sector, as well as upcoming healthcare PPP projects across the region.”

JLL, whose healthcare solutions span across healthcare delivery, pharmaceuticals, life sciences and medical technology sub-segments, says there are three key pillars that will drive the future of the industry in the Middle East, including: private sector participation; advanced infrastructure; and technology.

Investment into healthcare in the GCC countries will also continue to grow, according to JLL, and will consist of a range of factors including the need to build world-class healthcare infrastructure, expertise and services as GCC governments have increasingly come to recognise the potential for attracting medical tourists from overseas to the region.



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