This 2019 is the year in which the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union, commonly called Brexit, will be executed, but the negotiations have not reached ‘good port’ and the British Prime Minister Theresa May, after almost three years in charge of the Government, has announced his resignation as conservative leader for next June 7, which will lead him to lose his position as prime minister when the Conservative Party names a new successor.
Faced with the abyss of a Brexit without agreement, the pharmaceutical industry has been preparing its contingency plans during these months of turmoil and negotiations, as it is one of the worst hit sectors but now, the announcement of the resignation of May, has dilated the concern of the pharmaceutical companies.
And the fact is that leaving the United Kingdom from the EU would have an immediate and drastic impact that would affect the availability of medicines and vaccines, as well as affect the financing and staffing of the health system.
Since January, May has brought before Parliament the EU’s withdrawal agreement negotiated with Brussels on three occasions without obtaining the backing of the Chamber
This entire Brexit negotiation process has aroused concern and uncertainty in the pharmaceutical sector. In fact, the health providers of the National Health Service (NHS, for its acronym in English National Health Service) of the United Kingdom have repeatedly warned that, if there is no agreement between Brussels and the English Government, there is a risk significant to suffer “a shortage of medicines and medical devices”.
And, without a national plan or coordination, there could be a shortage of medicines and medical devices, which would make it difficult to stop and control the spread of diseases.
More than 2,600 drugs have part of the manufacturing carried out in Britain, while 45 million patient packs are supplied from Great Britain to EU countries each month and another 37 million flow to Britain from the EU.
To all this is added another of the major concerns of pharmaceutical companies: the cost of Brexit for their coffers. Pfizer, the company based in the United States, has estimated in about 100 million dollars (86 million euros) the costs that will involve the breakup of the United Kingdom with the European Union.
But not only Pfizer, the uncertainty about the consequences has forced companies like AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Merck to prepare for the worst case. At this point, GSK also agrees with Pfizer and estimates the expenditure at around 100 million dollars (86 million euros).
In addition, other small companies such as Dechra Pharmaceuticals, a veterinary drug company based in the northwest of England, said it could need to spend up to 2.6 million dollars (2.2 million euros) to duplicate the tests and move the records of products to the EU.
Now, the resignation of the British Prime Minister opens a period of great uncertainty in the coming months, with October 31 on the horizon as a new date for Brexit.
Distefar joins this concern about the UK exit without an agreement with the European Union. We will be very attentive to the news and especially how this output can affect our sector