Brussels, 12 May 2022
Innovation is critical to complete the green and digital transitions and to secure the EU’s open strategic autonomy. This is why a future-proof regulatory framework, which removes barriers to innovation, will allow cutting edge technology products to be developed and launched in Europe. In regards to this goal, EuropaBio has filed its response
to the European Commission Public Consultation on A New European Innovation Agenda
‘The European biotechnology sector is one of the fastest growing innovative industries in Europe. The EU should use its scientific and industrial excellence to drive growth in the biotechnology industry, from SMEs to large companies. This can be done by addressing regulatory hurdles, increasing investments, and simplifying access to finance to facilitate scale-up in Europe.’, said Dr Claire Skentelbery, Director General of EuropaBio.
The current GMO legislation puts European patients at a relative disadvantage, creating hurdles which result in extended timeframes, from initiation of clinical trials through to marketing authorisation. For industrial biotechnology, inefficient regulatory procedures have detrimental effects on the development and market access of innovative and sustainable bio-based products and solutions. Notably, the process-based approach of GM legislation results in unequal regulatory treatment for similar products with equivalent risk profiles. A science-based, proportionate, and predictable policy and regulatory approach would help leverage the full potential of biotechnology, to benefit citizens, the economy, and the environment.
‘The EU needs to harness innovation created by the biotechnology sector to unleash its economic potential, creating, and maintaining jobs and value for citizens. Appropriate structures to build digital literacy skills are vital to maximise the impact of the digital transformation. It is essential that we invest collectively to build societal understanding of how data can contribute to better healthcare outcomes.’, said Dr Claire Skentelbery, Director General of EuropaBio.
The EU should also continue efforts to invest in its scientific and industrial excellence and bridge the innovation gap between Member States. Initiatives aimed at reinforcing international cooperation in research and innovation, for example within Horizon Europe, or in collaboration
with specific industrial sectors, such as the Innovative Health Initiative or Circular Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking, are a key component of the EU innovation ecosystem.
On innovation performance, there is an urgent need to ensure fit for purpose regulation coupled with the right incentives for the life sciences industry. Rewarding innovation is critical to advance the objectives of the EU Green Deal and the Pharmaceutical Strategy.
‘Innovation-friendly legislation will empower the twin green and digital transitions and overall EU sustainability goals, which require a range of solutions, including those coming from innovative biotechnologies.’, said Dr Claire Skentelbery, Director General of EuropaBio.
EuropaBio‘s response to the consultation is public on the Commission’s website and is also available here