Ministers Co-Host BioPharma Policy Forum To Help Map The Future For Medicines

Posted on December, 12 - 2019

Two Government Ministers today [Thursday] co-hosted with the biopharmaceutical industry a Policy Forum aimed at gathering expert perspectives on the future for medicines innovation.

The event, ‘BioPharma Policy Forum: Medicines, Investments and Innovation’, drew some 60 leaders in industry, policymaking, research, academia, clinical care and patient advocacy.

The Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen TD, opened the Policy Forum.

It was closed by the Minister of State with Special Responsibility for Public Procurement, Open Government and eGovernment, Patrick O’Donovan TD.

The Policy Forum is an initiative of the biopharmaceutical industry, supported by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation. It is designed to align with - and contribute to - Future Jobs Ireland, the Government’s enterprise agenda. 

Among the themes the Policy Forum explored were industry-academic-Government partnerships; next-generation therapies; the industry’s regional impact; and competitiveness for future investments.

PwC, the consulting firm, offered an independent analysis of the biopharmaceutical industry - its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Minister Breen said: “The BioPharma Policy Forum was a useful exercise in gathering expert perspectives about a deeply consequential industry for Ireland - socially, economically and clinically. The Government’s enterprise agenda, ‘Future Jobs Ireland’, is about shaping policy to help to prepare Ireland for the economy of tomorrow. The biopharmaceutical industry is at the centre of enormous innovation, bringing forward new treatments for complex diseases and supporting tens of thousands of high-quality jobs. It is right that stakeholders, including industry, policy, research, academic, clinical and patient leaders, work together on shaping the future for medicines, investments and innovation.”

Minister O’Donovan said: “Foreign direct investment is a key engine of economic growth in Ireland. A significant proportion of that growth is powered by the biopharmaceutical industry. The Government wants to ensure the Ireland has the best operating environment to retain and attract investments and keep the country competitive for ground-breaking research and development.”

The Policy Forum is part of BioPharma Ambition, a conference that will be held on March 3rd and 4th, 2020, in The Printworks, Dublin Castle. BioPharma Ambition is an initiative of the Irish Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association (IPHA), BioPharmaChem Ireland (BPCI) and the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT).

Oliver O’Connor, Chief Executive of IPHA, said: “The Policy Forum is an exercise in partnership. We hope it can lead to further collaboration between industry, policymakers and others as we set out preparing for the future of medicines innovation, especially the gains, socially, economically and clinically, this can deliver for Ireland.”

Killian O’Driscoll, Director of Projects at NIBRT, said: “NIBRT is delighted to work with the broad partnership of key stakeholders to enable this Policy Forum and to further support the continued growth and development of the biopharmaceutical sector in Ireland.”

Matt Moran, Director of BPCI, said: “Ireland is a leading global location for biopharmaceutical manufacturing and development. It is critical that we retain that position. I look forward to today’s conversation providing clear direction to how we can ensure the existing sector stays competitive and that we are prepared to invest in the next wave of Biopharmaceutical technology and knowhow.”