A New Industrial Strategy for Europe: Win-Win for Both Economies & Health

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The EFPIA’s Nathalie Moll outlines the case for a new EU-wide industrial strategy with biopharmaceuticals at its heart.

 

The pharmaceutical industry is an area of strategic economic and social value where the EU is a global player

 

Europe has a history as a world leader in medical innovation, and in the face of competition from other global economies, we have to work to further strengthen our position in the future

The challenges Europe faces demand decisive action to safeguard the sustainability of our health, social, economic and environmental models. A new EU industrial strategy would reinvigorate our economies while helping to adapt to ageing populations and rising rates of chronic illness.

 

The European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries & Associations (EFPIA) believes revamping industrial policy could unlock enormous potential, in line with the agenda for Europe set out by Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.

 

In line with the President’s mission letters, the new European Commission is expected to work on a long-term strategy for Europe’s industrial sector, to “maximise the contribution of investment in research and innovation in supporting our policy objectives.” The research-based pharmaceutical sector can play a central part in the future competitiveness of the EU. Its dual role as a driver of economic growth and of improvements in public health makes the industry of critical strategic importance. Pharmaceutical companies can be engines of innovation, growth and competitiveness and need the right policy framework to deliver on their potential. In particular, a predictable regulatory environment and the right mix of incentives are key to foster innovation and job creation.

 

The pharmaceutical sector supports around 2.5 million jobs, directly contributing nearly EUR 100 billion to EU economies, along with a further EUR 106 billion through the supply chain and employee spending. Sustaining this is vital to Europe’s future and cannot be taken for granted. We are competing with other global markets for talent and investment. With other global economies working to create a pro-innovation environment, the EU cannot afford to stand still.

 

To help drive this conversation forward, Industry4Europe, a coalition of 149 sector Associations of which EFPIA is part, recently published its new Joint Paper ‘A long-term strategy for Europe’s industrial future: from words to action. Through cross-sectoral recommendations, the Industry4Europe coalition aims to contribute to the future EU industrial strategy announced by the new European Commission.

 

The Joint Paper presents concrete industrial policy proposals in seven priority fields; business-friendly policy environment, sustainability at business core, upgraded skills and training, enhanced research and innovation, investment and improved access to finance, reinforcement of the European Single Market and strengthened trade and international market access.

 

We must play to our strengths. Europe has a history as a world leader in medical innovation, and in the face of competition from other global economies, we have to work to further strengthen our position in the future.

 

Biopharmaceuticals are an area of strategic economic and social value where the EU can truly claim to be a global player. For example, more than 80 percent of vaccine doses produced by R&D driven companies are produced in Europe. We hope this inspires the new European Commission as well as Member States to craft a forward-looking strategy that builds on our strong foundation. Not only would this help to address the need for employment and economic growth; it would also be a catalyst for a sector that delivers innovative new treatments that help citizens to live healthier lives. A new industrial strategy for Europe is a win-win for our economies and for our health.

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