Baroness Fairhead, Minister of State for Trade and Export Promotion at the Department for International Trade, is today leading a strong delegation of UK life sciences businesses at the world-renowned Bio Conference.
The UK pavilion at the conference will play host to 21 British organisations and will celebrate the 70th anniversary of the NHS.
16,000 people are expected to attend the event over the course of the 3 days, presenting huge opportunities for the innovative UK life sciences firms and thought leaders who are attending.
The US is the world’s largest market for life sciences. Abingdon based PsiOxus is a great example of a UK company who are benefiting from the opportunities across the Atlantic. They have recently secured a deal with US counterpart Bristol Myers-Squibb that could be worth nearly $1 billion over the lifetime of the partnership.
The likes of Alderley Park from Manchester, the Northern Health Science Alliance and Ulster University will join PsiOxus and Baroness Fairhead at the conference. Delegates will have the chance to attend networking forums, panel sessions and the UK Innovation Reception which will focus on showcasing the UK as ‘the home of health innovation’.
Baroness Fairhead, Minister of State for the Department for International Trade, said:
As a global leader in scientific innovation, with more than 5,500 life sciences companies, the UK’s offer to the world in this sector is clear. I am delighted to be joined on this trade mission by terrific businesses from all across the UK.
The Department for International Trade will continue to use trade missions such as this to promote healthcare and life sciences innovators across the world, driving investment and forging trade ties that have the potential to further scientific boundaries and improve the lives of millions.
British pharma exports to the US totaled more than £6 billion last year, 8% of all American pharma imports, whilst US medical exports to the UK totaled £1.6 billion – demonstrating the demand for UK life sciences expertise.
Latest statistics from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy show that health and life sciences are worth over £70 billion to the economy and provide jobs for almost 241,000 people across the country. The recent launch of the government’s Industrial Strategy Life Sciences Sector Deal, demonstrates how the government will support the sector to develop and launch the next generation of medicines, technologies and diagnostics and provide better care and treatments for millions of patients.
The trade mission has a particular Northern Powerhouse angle as Virgin Atlantic have announced the reinstatement of the seasonal flight from Manchester Airport to Boston. The flight is a further boost for businesses across the Northern Powerhouse, increasing connectivity and ensuring Boston’s thriving financial and life sciences markets are made more accessible to UK companies.
Andrew Cowan, CEO of Manchester Airport, said:
Having strong connectivity to the world’s most important markets is key to creating a balanced and outward facing UK economy.
That is particularly the case when it comes to accessing global centres of excellence for high-growth sectors like life sciences.
It is clear the North has a number of strengths in the area, including world leading universities and a proven track record for innovation and commercialisation.
The availability of direct services to Boston from Manchester Airport only serves to enhance the international competitiveness of the sector, and North as a whole.
DIT provides a wide range of export support for UK businesses, including the opportunity to join trade missions via great.gov.uk.
All the UK regions are well represented on the visit:
- The Northern Powerhouse presence on the trade missions is particularly strong, with the Northern Health Science Alliance leading a 14-strong delegation involving 3 widely respected academics from the Universities of Manchester and York and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.
- This delegation will be highlighting the North of England’s strengths in the life sciences sector, where the region is leading the way. The North boasts a health services sector worth £30 billion, employing 500,000, and is home to more than a fifth of life science companies located in the UK.
- Northern Ireland also has clinical specialisms within the areas of oncology, cardiology, opthamology, respiratory and diabetes. Its new Centre of Excellence in Precision Medicine, in association with Queen’s University Belfast, joins a suite of research centres and centres of excellence which are attracting investment to the region.
- The Midlands offers a world-class research and innovation infrastructure including science and technology parks and business incubation facilities, and is home to the largest number of medical technology and device companies in the country. It is bringing a delegation of 10 outstanding companies to the UK Pavilion at Bio.
- In addition, Scottish Development International (SDI), is hosting a Scotland pavilion for Scottish life sciences companies. Over 600 life sciences organisations make Scotland one of the largest life sciences clusters in Europe, with innovation centres including stratified medicine, sensors and digital health.
- Wales, too, will be showcasing its strengths in medical technology, regenerative medicine, diagnostics, eHealth, pharmaceutical services and neuroscience.
Contact the DIT Media and Digital Team on 020 7008 3333 or follow us: @tradegovuk and gov.uk/dit