Europe – EU trade groups push Brexit negotiators to act to stop supply disruption

Trade bodies representing the UK and European Union pharmaceutical industries have urged Brexit negotiators to act now to prevent disruption to the supply of medicines. The joint statement warns failing to form a mutual recognition agreement to soften a hard Brexit could cost both sides billions and delay the supply of medicines by up to six weeks.

The latest round of negotiations about the post-Brexit relationship between the UK and EU is due to end on Friday. If sufficient progress has been made, negotiations will enter a new, intensified phase designed to enable the two sides to reach compromises over outstanding points of disagreement. However, with the sides yet to find common ground on important issues including state aid, it remains possible that the UK will split from the EU at the end of the year without a meaningful deal.

The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) are alarmed by the prospect of a hard split, leading them to issue a rare joint statement to the Brexit negotiators. The trade groups want the UK and EU to negotiate a mutual recognition agreement (MRA) for medicines manufacturing and establish a one-year phase-in process for the protocol covering Northern Ireland…