Last week I asked the Government if they plan to remain part of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) when the UK leaves the European Union. The production of medicines is a huge industry in my constituency and the medical industry employs thousands of people across the UK.
The EMA's main responsibility is the protection and promotion of public and animal health, through the evaluation and supervision of medicines. More specifically, it coordinates the evaluation and monitoring of medicines, developing technical guidance and providing scientific advice.
The EMA headquarters are currently in London and the UK plays a major role in the agency. The EMA currently directly employs over 500 people in the UK but many other jobs are linked to our leading role in the agency and the pharmaceutical industry. In 2015 about 10 percent of global pharmaceutical research and development was performed in UK laboratories giving us the third largest share globally.
The Government has not given any indication as to whether we will remain part of the EMA or if they plan to take steps to protect the jobs linked to it.
I know that the possibility of leaving the EMA creates uncertainty for medical research and medicine companies across the UK. The response from the Under-Secretary of State did not give any information on what impact leaving the EU will have on our membership of the EMA so I will continue to pressure them to maintain our membership of the agency.
Watch the video of my question here - European Medical Agency Question