Brexit will threaten UK pharmaceutical research and investment, select committee warns

An evidence session on Tuesday will examine how different scenarios relating to future customs and trading arrangements between the EU and the UK might affect the industry

Josie Co
Business Editor
Saturday 02 December 2017 16:44
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The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee has published written evidence of its inquiry into the pharmaceutical industry launched in September
The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee has published written evidence of its inquiry into the pharmaceutical industry launched in September

MPs have raised serious concerns about the post-Brexit regulation of the pharmaceuticals sector, warning that the UK’s departure from the EU could make Britain a less desirable place for investment and development.

Ahead of a public evidence session on Tuesday, the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee on Monday published written evidence of its inquiry into the pharmaceutical industry launched back in September.

Based on submissions from 19 organisations, including the Association of British Healthcare Industries, the British Generic Manufacturers Association, the British Medical Association and several publicly listed companies, the report concludes that the possible threat of Brexit to research and development is notable.

“There are serious concerns raised around the future regulation of pharmaceuticals, mutual recognition of medicines, and the prospect of damaging disruption to cross-EU drug supply chains,” said Rachel Reeves, chair of the committee.

“This is very concerning, with uncertainty risking the UK becoming a less desirable place for investment and development in a growing, productive industry,” she added.

An evidence session on Tuesday will examine how different scenarios relating to future customs and trading arrangements between the EU and the UK might affect the industry, and what the Government should be seeking to achieve in negotiations, the committee said.

The latest report follows a string of similar warnings on what implications Brexit might have for the healthcare sector.

In September, researchers writing in The Lancet medical journal said that Brexit could have a “potentially catastrophic” impact on the NHS.

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