Press briefing on Germany as a biotech location
On August 24, BIO Deutschland and AG Pro Biosimilar jointly organized a background discussion on the topic of "Germany as a biotech location: what makes it tick - what strengthens it - what weakens it" in digital form.
The most important factors for a successful research and development location were explained by Viola Bronsema, Managing Director of BIO Deutschland. She gave a brief overview of the industry as well as the most important key figures and addressed the specifics of the business model of a biotechnology company, such as the importance of spin-offs from academia and the high capital requirements. She used the example of BioNTech's Marburg plant to illustrate how important a good infrastructure is for a strong location. Here, large quantities of Corona vaccine could be produced very quickly, as the plant had been taken over already in accordance with GMP certification from Novartis.
A short film then introduced the journalists to automatic substitution in pharmaceuticals and the resulting cost pressure on companies, which, in the case of generics, had accelerated the migration of production sites to non-European countries, especially in Asia. Christoph Stoller, CEO of the Israeli pharmaceutical company Teva, explained in his presentation that similar relocations are to be feared if, as planned, automatic substitution is also introduced for biosimilars in Germany. He showed which reasons were decisive for his company to invest 500 million euros in Germany in particular and to expand the Ulm production site for biopharmaceuticals. The speakers agreed that competition between companies is natural. However, if there is a political desire for a strong biotech location in Germany or Europe in order to avoid strong dependencies and to maintain high-quality jobs and value creation, then the framework conditions must be set in such a way that this is also possible in the long term.