Wednesday, 21 February 2018The biopharmachem sector maintained its position as the largest exporter of goods from Ireland in 2017 with record total exports of €67.8 billion, up 2% on the previous year. The sector now accounts for 55% of overall Irish exports of goods (excluding services), the BioPharma Ambition Conference 2018 was told today.
BioPharma Ambition, a major international conference staged in Dublin Castle on 21 & 22 February, has attracted a number of keynote international speakers in the areas of cancer trials, genetics, gene therapy, immunology and manufacturing. The event is hosted jointly by the Irish Pharmaceutical Healthcare Association (IPHA), BioPharmaChem Ireland (part of Ibec) and the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT). The conferences partners are InterTrade Ireland and the IDA.
In conjunction with the conference, NIBRT today announced a new strategic partnership with Jefferson (Philadelphia University and Thomas Jefferson University) in Philadelphia, USA to establish its first education and training centre for biologics manufacturing in North America. The move is NIBRT’s first overseas strategic partnership.
Delegates at the conference were told that the island of Ireland was the 6th largest medicinal and pharmaceutical manufacturing hub in the world last year. Each of the world’s top 10 biopharmachem companies has a presence in Ireland. Employment in the sector is expected to have surpassed 30,000 in 2017 when final employment figures are published later this year. The industry also indirectly supports an additional 28,000 people in providing services. Employment in the sector grew more than fivefold from 5,200 in 1988 to 29,826 in 2016.
BioPharma Ambition will be addressed by the Minister for Health, Simon Harris, TD, on Thursday, 22 February. The conference has attracted international policy leaders, world renown researchers and senior industry personnel who will highlight the direction of research and how Ireland on an all-island basis supports innovation in discovery, development, manufacturing and healthcare solutions.
Commenting, Oliver O’Connor, CEO of the IPHA, said: “BioPharma Ambition is a showcase for Ireland’s biopharma industry and its ambitions for the health and well-being of populations. Over the next two days, we will hear from international policy leaders, renowned researchers and senior industry personnel as we showcase innovation in discovery, development, manufacturing and healthcare solutions.
“IPHA member companies are in the business of making the fruits of this innovation available to patients – a process that is unfortunately not as efficient in Ireland as in other countries. We look forward to hearing about what’s in the pipeline and how the biopharmaceutical industry is at the very heart of future health solutions.”
Commenting Matt Moran, Director of BioPharmaChem Ireland, said: “Ireland continues to enjoy an impressive period of investment for the biopharma sector, most recently the announcement last week by MSD of the construction of a new biotech plant in Dublin employing 350 people. This is the latest in a series of high profile investments which has seen over €10 billion being invested by the industry so far since 2000 including over €1 billion in the last 12 months alone. Ireland remains one of the most important hubs for biopharma in the world and we so delighted to welcome some of the global industry’s leaders to Dublin this week.”
Commenting Dominic Carolan, CEO of NIBRT, said: “NIBRT is delighted to be partnering with BPCI and IPHA again to hold BioPharma Ambition, which provides a great opportunity to better understand the future development of the biopharma sector from an impressive line-up of international speakers. The global growth of the sector provides many opportunities for Irish industry and academics and we are very pleased to announce today NIBRT’s partnership with Jefferson to establish a biopharma training facility in Philadelphia.”