Happy Brexmas? No post withdrawal forecasts in UK Gov Life Sciences report

By Gareth Macdonald contact

- Last updated on GMT

Gettyimages/Stuart Ritchie
Gettyimages/Stuart Ritchie

Related tags: Life sciences, European union

UK drug makers keen to know how Brexit will affect them will be disappointed by the Life Science sector report the Government released today.

The report​ was published in response to requests the UK Government share information it has on the impact the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union will have on industry.

The document describes the life sciences sector based on data from public domain sources, primarily the Office of National Statistics (ONS) and the Office for Life Sciences (OLS).

It reveals, for example, that of the 233,000 people employed in the life sciences industry in the UK some 90,000 work in the development and manufacture of pharmaceuticals and biopharmaceuticals.

It also states that in 2016 “the Life Sciences industry generated approximately £20.7bn turnover​” again citing ONS data.

Little impact

But readers seeking an impact assessment will be disappointed as the document does not provide any explicit information on how EU withdrawal will affect UK pharmaceutical firms.

The document does set out examples of arrangements non-EU countries have with the Union – covering issues like import tariffs, manufacturing regulations and medical devices.

However, it also states these examples “should not be taken to represent the options being considered by the government for the future economic relationship between the UK and the EU​."

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