In the framework of its General Assembly, held in Madrid, Farmaindustria has highlighted, this Thursday, 23 June, access to innovation, strengthening production and consolidating Spain’s leadership in biomedical R&D as the basis for the Strategic Plan for the Pharmaceutical Industry.
“We should be proud to be part of a sector that, more than ever, has been part of the solution to this terrible pandemic,” said Juan López-Belmonte, president of the Spanish pharmaceutical industry employers’ association. He also emphasised the potential and commitment of the sector to contribute to the economic and social reactivation of Spain, and encouraged members “to persevere in the great work carried out during the two years of the health crisis”.
“It has been shown that the country’s well-being and economy depend to a large extent on health, and health depends on medicines and the research that makes them possible. The whole population has seen our commitment, our responsiveness, our usefulness. We are no longer something distant, that people remember only when they fall seriously ill,” said Juan López-Belmonte.
This response to the pandemic also shows, according to the head of Farmaindustria, that this sector “is critical for Spain not only from the point of view of health care, but also from the economic and social perspective”, and that the pharmaceutical industry has the strengths and the capacity “to be one of the strategic sectors that contribute to the economic and social reactivation of Spain and to reinforce the productive model of the near future”.
Spain needs strategic sectors on which to rely to emerge from the crisis and build its future, “and we have objective data that endorse us as one of those sectors that the country needs, as shown by our contribution to investment in R&D, where we are the leading industrial sector in the country along with the automotive industry, or our level of exports, which has set record figures in recent years and has placed the medicine as the fourth most exported product in Spain,” continued López-Belmonte.
In the opinion of the head of this employers’ association, with these strengths and a medium- to long-term vision, it will be possible to “develop the potential” of this sector. Farmaindustria considers that the Strategic Plan for the Pharmaceutical Industry that the Government announced in its Recovery, Transformation and Resilience Plan is the appropriate framework for doing so.
This strategy – which has already begun to be addressed in a first meeting with the Ministry of Health – should be based on three main pillars, summarised the president of the employers’ association, such as “reconciling better patient access to innovation with the sustainability of the health system, strengthening the productive fabric and making Spain an international benchmark in biomedical research, based on the leadership already gained in clinical trials of medicines”.
With regard to access, the president of Farmaindustria pointed out that the figures are worrying and far removed from those of the benchmark countries in the European Union (EU). “Spain should have a level of access equal to that of the European reference countries. In the same way that we have been vaccinated against Covid-19 at the same time as the Germans or the French, we should have access to the same medicines as them,” he said, and reiterated the commitment of pharmaceutical companies to apply solutions within a framework of financial sustainability of the health system.
Farmaindustria’s General Assembly was the first for the organisation’s new director general, Juan Yermo, who took office on 3 May. Yermo reviewed the activity of the last year and presented to the associates the lines of work for 2022.