EU, America and China will all get new medicines ahead of Britain after Brexit, drug company boss warns

16-Feb-2019 Intellasia | AFP | 6:00 AM Print This Post

The EU, the United States and China will get access to new medicines ahead of the UK after Brexit, the CEO of a global pharmaceutical company has said.

David Meek, the CEO of Ipsen, a leading pharmaceutical multinational, has warned that the uncertainty around Brexit and the relocation of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) from London to Amsterdam has meant Britain has slipped down the list of priorities when it comes to filing for approval for new drugs.

The responsibilities of the EMA will be adopted by the UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA), which Meek believes will now fall into less prominent category.

“[Currently] we prioritise the US’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the EMA and then we do the next markets, for example the Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Agency in Japan,” he told Pharmaphorum.

“China’s FDA has made some announcements about global trials and global drug development and being the second largest market today China’s FDA would certainly move up in the queue.

“Then you have the other markets such as Swissmedic, Health Canada, Australia the UK would fall into that basket.”

Former Brexit secretary David Davis had claimed that agencies would be able to stay in Britain after the UK leaves the EU.

He had argued their location would be subject to the negotiations, something which Brussels said was unacceptable.

The EU had repeatedly stated the EMA would have to be located in a member state and there were many within the EU who were keen to host it.

The EMA’s London headquarters hosted 36,000 national regulators and scientists each year who used to come to the UK to approve drugs for the EU.

It employed nearly 1,000 people who coordinated the work being done across the EU.

The latest revelation comes as the government revealed emergency plans to fly in medical supplies have been drawn up to ensure hospitals remain stocked amid six months of expected chaos at Britain’s channel ports in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Critical supplies could also be diverted away from channel routes and some drugs may even be rationed to ensure stocks do not run out.

Matthew Hancock had previously admitted he had already met with industry leaders to discuss building up NHS reserves of vaccinations and other medical supplies if Britain crashes out of the European Union without a deal.


Category: China

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