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EMA issues statement on the outcome of the EU Referendum

7 July 2016  •  Author: Victoria White, Digital Content Producer

In the recent EU Referendum, the majority voted against United Kingdom’s continued membership of the European Union.

eu referendum

There have been many questions about what this will mean for the pharmaceutical industry, and in particular, what this will mean for the European Medicines Agency (EMA).

The EMA is a decentralised agency of the European Union (EU). The Agency is responsible for the scientific evaluation, supervision and safety monitoring of medicines developed by pharmaceutical companies for use in the EU. As the EMA is located in London, the outcome of the EU Referendum means that the Agency will likely be relocated to the EU.

Now, the EMA has issued a statement on the outcome of the vote, saying: “EMA would like to underline that its procedures and work streams are not affected by the outcome of the referendum. The Agency will continue its operations as usual, in accordance with the timelines set by its rules and regulations.

“No Member State has ever decided to leave the EU, so there is no precedent for this situation. The implications for the seat and operations of EMA depend on the future relationship between the UK and the EU. This is unknown at present and therefore we will not engage in any speculations.”

Member States to decide on the seat of the EMA

The statement also refers to the location of the Agency: “EMA welcomes the interest expressed by some Member States to host the Agency in future. The decision on the seat of the Agency will however not be taken by EMA, but will be decided by common agreement among the representatives of the Member States. We are confident that the Member States will take the most appropriate decision on EMA’s location and arrangements in due course, taking also into account the complex political and legal environment generated by the outcome of the UK referendum.”

The statement goes on to reinforce that the EMA will continue to focus on its core activities: “For the time being, the Agency, its 890 employees and all the European experts contributing to EMA’s work will continue to focus on EMA’s mission to protect human and animal health and ensure access to medicines that are safe, effective and of good quality.”

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