The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) and a group of leaders from ABPI member companies have joined more than 1,280 business executives, including directors from 51 FTSE 100 companies, in signing a letter backing the UK's membership of the EU.
The letter, printed today in the Times, comes on the final official day of campaigning ahead of the UK's referendum on its membership of the European Union, with voters going to the polls tomorrow (Thursday 23 June).
Alongside the signature of ABPI Chief Executive Mike Thompson, the letter has also been signed by Sir Andrew Witty, CEO, GSK; Søren Bo Christiansen, President MSD Europe & Canada Human Health, Merck Sharp & Dohme Limited; Nick Burgin, President & COO EMEA, Eisai Europe Ltd; Matt Regan, UK General Manager, AbbVie; Robin Bhattercherjee, General Manager, Actelion Pharmaceuticals UK; John Kearney, General Manager, UK & Ireland, Amgen & President of the ABPI; Dr. Alexander Moscho, CEO, Bayer UK/Ireland; Wim Souverijns, Vice President & General Manager, UK and Ireland, Celgene; Tom Delahoyde, Managing Director, Chiesi Limited; Dr. Jan-Uwe Claas, General Manager UK, Grunenthal Limited; Geraldine Murphy, Managing Director, LEO Pharma UK/IE; Jose Falcon, Country Manager, PharmaMar; Tarja Stenvall, General Manager, UK Sanofi Limited; and, Pascal Soriot, CEO, AstraZeneca.
The letter reads:
"We own and run more than 1,280 businesses, from micro companies to the FTSE 100. We know our firms are stronger in Europe.
Our reasons are straightforward: businesses and their employees benefit massively from being able to trade inside the world’s largest single market without barriers. As business people, we are always looking to the future – and a future inside the European Union is where we see more opportunities for investment, growth and new jobs.
We know that Britain leaving the EU would mean having to re-establish terms of trade from scratch with our home market of 500 million consumers. That wouldn’t just hurt exporters but the hundreds of thousands of small and medium firms who do business with them.
Even those that want Britain to leave say that, in the short term, Brexit would lead to economic uncertainty and would put jobs at risk. Smaller businesses and the people they employ are particularly vulnerable to any economic shock which could follow a vote to leave the EU.
Britain leaving the EU would mean uncertainty for our firms, less trade with Europe and fewer jobs. Britain remaining in the EU would mean the opposite – more certainty, more trade and more jobs. EU membership is good for business and good for British jobs. That’s why, on June 23rd, we back Britain remaining in the EU.”
The UK pharmaceutical industry first announced its support of the UK remaining in Europe on Monday 9 May.
Previous ABPI statements and commentary on the EU referendum
ABPI Press Office
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About the ABPI
The ABPI represents innovative research-based biopharmaceutical companies, large, medium and small, leading an exciting new era of biosciences in the UK.
Our industry, a major contributor to the economy of the UK, brings life-saving and life-enhancing medicines to patients. We represent companies supplying around 90 per cent of all medicines used by the NHS, and are researching and developing the majority of the current medicines pipeline, ensuring that the UK remains at the forefront of helping patients prevent and overcome diseases.
The ABPI is recognised by government as the industry body negotiating on behalf of the branded pharmaceutical industry, for statutory consultation requirements including the pricing scheme for medicines in the UK.