BIO Deutschland Attends the National Associations Council (NAC) Meeting and the Healthcare Council in Brussels

On 20 November 2012, a representative from the Bio Deutschland office attended the annual autumn meeting of the EuropaBio working groups in Brussels. The focus was on the European Biotech Week, which will take place across Europe during the first week of October 2013 and celebrate the 60th anniversary of the discovery of DNA. The national biotechnology associations are invited to hold various activities on the topic of biotechnology in order to draw the attention of policymakers and the public to this advanced technology.

In the Healthcare Council meeting that was held afterwards, EuropaBio representatives reported on current topics such as the revision of the Clinical Trials Directive; progress on the “Tajani” Initiative, which, among other things, calls for orphan drugs to be licensed; and EuropaBio’s planned workshop on benefit assessments (health technology assessment) on 6 December 2012 in Brussels. Furthermore, Thomas Heynisch from the Directorate General Enterprise and Industry in the European Commission attended the meeting and answered questions.

Peter Heinrich, Chairman of the Board of BIO Deutschland, attended EuropaBio’s board meeting in Brussels on 22 November 2012. The agenda included a discussion on legislation on the unitary patent system. The board decided to push for an amendment to the problematic article 14h of the unitary patent legislation, as this article goes beyond its apparent aim of protecting plant breeders’ interests and would limit other biotech applications as regards the patentability of inventions. In turn, this would reduce acceptance of the unitary patent system. The Working Group on Intellectual Property was consulted on this topic and asked to provide a statement in the near future.

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