Procuring Medical Items from Asia – Pilot
Should MSF procure more materials from Asia?
MSF Logistique – the entity responsible for much of the MSF’s procurement – currently sources most of its materials from European suppliers. However, there are strong markets for many of the products that MSF routinely uses across South, Southeast and East Asia. Within those markets, there are several viable producers from which MSF could purchase materials for use in our field projects. We believe these items could be cheaper and create shorter supply chains, especially for MSF field projects located in Asia. Shorter supply lines could reduce the risk of stock ruptures, cut transportation costs and reduce our environmental impact.
In 2019, the Japan Innovation Unit, MSF Logistique and the MSF International Office began researching procurement opportunities in Asia. Since MSF is largely unfamiliar with Asian markets, our unit’s location and particular logistics and procurement expertise are huge comparative advantages for this task.
Conduct comprehensive market analysis and develop detailed dossiers on the quality of potential products and suppliers;
Increase the number of alternative sources for each product;
Reduce the risks of stock ruptures, especially of critical items;
Reduce both purchasing and transportation costs of materials;
Improve logistic efficiency to get materials faster, cheaper, and with less environmental impact.
Progress so far
We have identified that there are qualified and competitive suppliers of medical items in the region, especially in South Korea and China. Following the successful pilot, phase II of the project will be scaled up under the South-East, East Asia, Pacific (SEEAP) partnership.
- Ongoing since 2019
- MSF Logistique, MSF Japan
Last update: September 2021
MSF Japan Innovation Unit
MSF Japan Innovation Unit is providing innovative ideas of solutions to the MSF activities. If you, either as a company or as a professional, have an idea that would be beneficial to our projects as well as patients, please contact us. Your innovative proposal is always appreciated.
- ©Frederic NOY