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Parliamentary questions
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14 July 2020
 E-002678/2020
Answer given by Ms Kyriakides
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-002678/2020

The Commission is aware of the dependency of the pharmaceutical industry on the active pharmaceutical ingredients and raw pharmaceutical materials from third countries, mainly from India and China.

The issue of robustness of supply chain and strategic autonomy will be addressed in the forthcoming pharmaceutical strategy(1), which will be developed and implemented in synergy with other Commission policies and actions, in particular with the industrial strategy(2).

The pharmaceutical strategy aims to integrate the lessons learnt from the COVID-19 pandemic, including on strategic autonomy. In addition, the Commission is exploring the possibility of bringing together all actors in the manufacturing value chain to address the structural problem of dependency.

The EU response to the issue of dependency will take into account specificity of the EU market and of its regulatory framework as well as the EU trade policy and international agreements.

The Commission is also launching a study to analyse the root causes of medicine shortages, to assess whether the current legal framework is sufficient to ensure continued supply and to identify and benchmark possible future actions that could address risks of shortages.

(1)https://ec.europa.eu/info/law/better-regulation/have-your-say/initiatives/12421-Pharmaceutical-Strategy-Timely-patient-access-to-affordable-medicines
(2)https://ec.europa.eu/info/strategy/priorities-2019-2024/europe-fit-digital-age/european-industrial-strategy_en
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