The European Union and the United States make up the largest and most dynamic trading relationship in the world. Together they account for about half the entire world GDP and for nearly a third of world trade flows. As the 14th negotiation week has kicked off yesterday in Brussels, let’s review why this deal offer us such a great opportunity to strengthen economic competitiveness and improve the health, lives, and economic opportunity of individuals on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.
Jobs & Growth
Investments in research and development enable the discovery and innovation that strengthens the European economy and our region’s global competitiveness. With its highly-skilled workforce, R&D intensity, and global growth prospects, the biopharmaceutical sector is a key industry for Europe. Currently, EU and U.S. already account for 80% of global sales, 75% of global R&D in life sciences and 1.5 million jobs in the sector.
A recent study by Copenhagen Economics notes that a comprehensive pharmaceutical chapter in TTIP which aligns regulatory regimes and reduces duplicative costs can also support new long-term economic benefits: It can lead to an increase EU export of pharmaceuticals by €9 billion, provide 19,000 highly productive and qualified jobs in the EU pharmaceutical industry and 60,000 additional jobs in related industries in the EU.
TTIP presents a key opportunity to ensure competitiveness and to strengthen transatlantic pharmaceutical industry. To enable this potential, the biopharmaceutical industry is calling for an ambitious, comprehensive trade agreement that achieves regulatory alignment, enshrines existing strong intellectual property protections, and ensures predictability and transparency when bringing new medicines on the market.
Faster Patient Access
The medicinal progress we have seen over the last decades has been impressive. In 2015, the EU and the U.S. approved 138 new medicines combined. Innovative discoveries by the biopharmaceutical industry continue to make life better for people around the globe. However, for these discoveries to continue, we must maintain the environment that fosters innovation and makes these discoveries a reality.
Another great opportunity that TTIP can offer is the regulatory alignment for pharmaceuticals. By addressing duplicative processes, unnecessary delays and increasing efficiencies, we’re confident that TTIP will be instrumental in providing faster delivery of medical treatments to patients around the world.
This video by the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) provides interesting insights on how TTIP can help reach more patients than ever before. Watch it here.