• Press Office

    Posted in category News Release by Press Office on 29/11/2010

    Growth review highlights life sciences as a key sector; confirms introduction of patent box and reviews R&D tax credits

The government’s growth review “The path to strong, sustainable and balanced growth", launched today by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, is a promising road map to enable the UK to build its vibrant life sciences sector.


Of significance to the life sciences sector are government plans to introduce a more competitive tax system including:

  • The introduction of a “Patent Box” - a preferential tax regime of 10% for profits arising from patents which will encourage the commercialisation of discoveries in the UK
  • A review of R&D tax credits to reflect proposals of the Dyson review

The growth review responds to some of the key principles highlighted in a joint paper submitted by the Association of British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI), Association of British Healthcare Industries (ABHI), Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC), BioIndustry Association (BIA), British In Vitro Diagnostic Association (BIVDA) and Cancer Research UK (CRUK), which were:

  • People – to focus on skills and training for the scientists of the future to include support for greater researcher mobility between industry and academia
  • Access to finance – to ensure provisions are in place for adequate funding of business and for support of basic science
  • Environment – to include proposals to build on the collaborations and partnerships already in place to create the ideal research landscape
  • Innovation – to improve the uptake and procurement of world leading innovative products and streamline the regulation that affects the sector to speed treatments reaching the people who need them.
  • Long-term growth – to recognise the need for a longer term strategy for investment in science strategy to create a sense of direction for the life sciences sector

The industry and charity organisations look forward to working together with government and the National Health Service to deliver on these goals and impact on the health and wellbeing of people across the UK.

Richard Barker, Director General of the ABPI, said:

“With Government’s welcome announcement of the Patent Box, enabling UK intellectual property to generate UK jobs, and their clear recognition of the role of the NHS in supporting the sector, the stage is set for a resurgence in UK life sciences.”

Peter Ellingworth, Chief Executive of the ABHI, said:

“The UK has a large number of small businesses operating in the life sciences sector, it is important that these companies are given the support they need to grow into medium and large businesses. We welcome the measures outlined in the growth review, especially those around procurement. A simplified and more transparent procurement system should open up the NHS to small businesses and improve the uptake of innovative technologies.”

Simon Denegri, Chief Executive of the AMRC, said:

“The Government's statement on growth today is an important step towards ensuring surety for the life sciences sector. Its proposals will help maintain the UK's attractiveness as a leading centre for medical and health research. Its focus on sustaining a culture of collaboration and innovation is vital if charity-funded research is to make a difference to people's lives with knock-on benefits for public expenditure and economic growth."

Nigel Gaymond, Chief Executive of the BIA, said:

“The introduction of the Patent Box will result in a significant change of attitude towards the UK as a location for R&D and manufacturing. This will ultimately stimulate interest and investment in the UK’s bioscience companies. We also welcome the opportunity to maximise the opportunities offered by R&D tax credits which are already a vital incentive for smaller businesses.”

Doris-Ann Williams, Director General of BIVDA, said:

“This review is a welcome demonstration of the Government’s commitment to realising the value that can be brought to the UK economy by life sciences, and a recognition of the key collaborative role the NHS will play in that.”



For further information, please contact

ABHI – Daniel Jones, Manager External Communications – 020 7960 4375 or daniel.jones@abhi.org.uk

ABPI - Edel McCaffrey, Media Affairs - 020 7747 1410 or emccaffrey@abpi.org.uk

AMRC – Becky Purvis, Policy and Public Affairs Manager – 020 7685 2626 - 07738 014500 or b.purvis@amrc.org.uk

BIA – Robert Winder, Communications Manager – 020 7565 7193 - 07825 942 934 or rwinder@bioindustry.org

BIVDA – Doris-Ann Williams, Director General – 020 7957 4633 or doris-ann@bivda.co.uk

Notes to Editors

Association of British Healthcare Industries
The Association of British Healthcare Industries (ABHI) is the industry association for the UK medical technology sector. Our aim is to promote the rapid adoption of medical technologies to ensure optimum patient outcomes throughout the UK and in key global markets. Members include manufacturers of medical devices, equipment and consumables and other suppliers to the medical community. www.abhi.org.uk

The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry
The Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry (ABPI) is the trade association for the research-based pharmaceutical industry in the UK, representing companies both small and large. Our member companies research, develop, manufacture and supply more than 80 per cent of the branded medicines prescribed through the National Health Service (NHS). For further information visit: www.abpi.org.uk

Association of Medical Research Charities
The Association of Medical Research Charities is a membership organisation of the leading medical and health research charities in the UK. In 2009-10, our 124 members invested over £1 billion into medical research in the UK. www.amrc.org.uk

BioIndustry Association
Established in 1989, the BIA (BioIndustry Association) exists to encourage and promote a financially sound and thriving bioscience sector within the UK economy and concentrates its efforts on emerging enterprise and the related interests of companies with whom such enterprise trades.

With over 250 members, the BIA supports a wide range of sectors, majoring on the human health benefits of the technology and represents the interests of these innovative companies to a broad section of stakeholders from patient groups to politicians, advancing its members interests both within the UK and internationally to create a healthy UK bioscience sector which benefits society. For further information, please go to: www.bioindustry.org

British In Vitro Diagnostic Association
The British In Vitro Diagnostics Association (BIVDA) works to raise awareness of the clinical and cost utility of in vitro diagnostics in the provision of effective healthcare in the UK. The membership of BIVDA currently represents over 95% of the industry with more than 100 member companies. Membership includes UK subsidiaries of multinationals, UK SME's and a number of start-up companies. BIVDA members supply diagnostic tools to the NHS for a range of disease areas, including diabetes and cancer. www.bivda.co.uk

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