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 who supply more than 80 per cent of all branded medicines used by the NHS and who 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 disease.
Globally our industry is researching and developing more than 7,000 new medicines.
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.
1. According to new analysis by the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries & Associations (EFPIA), 82million packs of medicine move back and forth between the UK and Europe every single month. In the event of a so-called 'Hard Brexit', 45% of pharmaceutical companies expect delays to trade and medicines supply if the UK fell back to WTO rules.
2. On Friday 17 November 2017, The Economist published an article on pharmaceutical firms triggering their Brexit contingency plans. The ABPI said that "if progress on post-Brexit arrangements is not made by December, an increasing number of pharma firms will activate 'no deal' contingency plans to avert problems in the supply of medicines."
3. The pharmaceutical sector first published its priorities for the UK's departure from the European Union in September 2016. These priorities include:
Regulation: Securing ongoing alignment, cooperation and mutual recognition between the UK and the EU regarding the authorisation, testing and surveillance of medicines
People: Providing certainty for UK and EU citizens working in the pharmaceutical industry. Agree a straightforward immigration system that allows pharmaceutical companies to employ the best talent from around the world, and that facilitates skilled UK and EU nationals working across Europe
Research: Scientific research collaboration between the UK and EU should be maintained after the UK leaves the EU. UK/EU scientific collaboration strengthens the continent's global position in life sciences, attracting global life science investment to Europe
Trade & Supply: Medicines used by patients across UK and Europe have integrated supply chains. The UK and the EU should conclude a comprehensive agreement with a pharmaceutical protocol that ensures maximum alignment between EU and UK pharmaceutical laws. Any such agreement needs to avoid causing any disruption to existing quality control arrangements and must not disrupt the supply of medicines to patients in Europe or the UK
4. In July 2017, the UK Government publicly stated its commitment to the "UK wanting to continue to work with the EU on medicines" through a letter to the Financial Times from the Secretary of State for Health and Secretary of State for Business. This was repeated in 'Collaboration on science and innovation – a future partnership a paper', published by the Department for Exiting the European Union in September 2017.
5. The ABPI is also a member of the Brexit Health Alliance. The Alliance is co-chaired by Sir Hugh Taylor, the former permanent secretary of the Department of Health and Chair of Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, and Niall Dickson, the Chief Executive of the NHS Confederation. It brings together the NHS, medical research, industry, patients and public health organisations, to safeguard the interests of patients and the healthcare and research they rely on during the Brexit negotiations.