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Pharmaceutical Industry Calls for Political Action to Boost UK Health and Economic Growth

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The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) has issued a challenge to all political parties to outline detailed plans for unlocking the potential of the life sciences industry to drive UK economic and health growth. The pharmaceutical industry, the largest investor in UK research and development, contributed £9 billion in 2022, generating £16.4 billion in economic value and creating 126,000 high-skilled jobs across the country.

ABPI’s ‘Manifesto for Investment, Health, and Growth‘ presents a comprehensive plan to enhance patient health, boost access to new medicines via clinical trials, and bring more manufacturing jobs and economic value to the UK. The manifesto also aims to create more highly-skilled, well-paid jobs nationwide.

The potential benefits are significant. With the right tools, the next government could achieve a 40% reduction in the total UK disease burden, generate £16.3 billion and 85,000 new jobs annually from increased pharmaceutical exports, attract £1.2 billion and 7,000 high-quality jobs annually from greater life sciences foreign direct investment, and create 17,000 jobs each year from increased UK life sciences initial public offerings (IPOs).

ABPI Calls for Government-Pharmaceutical Industry Partnership to Unlock UK Pharmaceutical Potential

The ABPI’s Pharma Impact Map highlights the pharmaceutical industry’s substantial contributions to local and regional economies in all four UK nations, showcasing partnerships with the NHS and local research and manufacturing sites. Richard Torbett, ABPI Chief Executive, stated: “We urge the next government to partner with the pharmaceutical industry to unlock economic growth and ensure fair and timely access to treatments and vaccines in the NHS. The UK has great potential to grow our successful Life Sciences sector while supporting the NHS in delivering care and preventing illness.”

The ABPI Manifesto for Investment, Health, and Growth emphasizes that the innovative pharmaceutical industry has the potential to significantly drive UK health and wealth. Already a major contributor to UK research and development with £9 billion invested in 2022, the industry’s medicines and vaccines are transformative for public health, patients, and the NHS. The ABPI’s manifesto outlines a vision for the UK to surpass global competitors by fostering a cycle of investment and innovation, attracting a larger share of global R&D.

Delivering this vision requires a true partnership between pharmaceutical industry and government, focused on collaboration, transparency, and a unified approach to health and growth. The manifesto includes three key asks for the next government: First, strengthen the development, regulation, and adoption of new medicines and vaccines by creating a cohesive life sciences ecosystem to deliver rapid approvals and adoption of medicines by the NHS, setting a goal for the UK to lead in public R&D investment within the G7, reversing the decline in pharmaceutical industry clinical trials in the UK, establishing a world-leading health data-enabled patient recruitment service for clinical trials, and ensuring the UK’s health data offer is globally competitive.

Pharmaceutical Industry

Strong Government-Pharmaceutical Industry Partnerships to Enhance NHS Sustainability and Economic Growth

Second, partner with pharmaceutical industry to drive better health and a sustainable NHS by delivering key commitments in the Voluntary Scheme for Branded Medicines Pricing, Access, and Growth (VPAG), valuing the long-term benefits of medicines appropriately, implementing the Innovative Medicines Fund in England effectively, supporting the development and uptake of new vaccines, and providing central funding for the National Action Plan against antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

Third, equip pharmaceutical industry to drive UK economic growth by strengthening global trade in life sciences and advocating for international IP frameworks, promoting UK life science exports as a key growth sector, fostering a cross-departmental approach to education and skills to address current and future needs, making the UK a leader in advanced and sustainable medicines manufacturing through long-term capital grants and innovation funding, and ensuring stability for investors with a competitive tax and fiscal incentives environment for R&D and capital investment.

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The ABPI’s manifesto emphasizes the need for strong government-pharmaceutical industry partnerships to realize the full potential of the UK life sciences sector, driving health improvements and economic growth across the country.


Resource: Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry, June 10, 2024

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