Brussels, 30 January 2002
Europabio, the European association for bioindustries, has welcomed the announcement of a new European Commission biotechnology policy which aims to help make Europe the world's most competitive knowledge-based society.
Europabio was reported as saying that the announcement of the new biotech policy, made on 23 January, came at a time when 'fledgling biotech industries are struggling to keep pace with their international rivals.' The organisation also called for the Commission to ensure that its life sciences and biotechnology strategy is endorsed at the Barcelona European Council in March.
Europabio Secretary-General Hugo Scheppens warned, however, that 'although a European biotech strategy is a good start, resources and energies at EU and national levels must be mobilised and coordinated to make the strategy a reality,' adding that the strategy must be accompanied by 'coherent' support measures.
Mr Scheppens also said that Europe has been hindered in the past by inconsistent or impractical regulation and called for a 'science-based, consistent and workable' regulatory process.
The new strategy paper, drawn up following a broad public consultation, sets out an action plan including measures to boost life sciences education and improve scientific mobility and access to risk capital.
For further information, please consult the following web address: http://europa.eu.int/comm/biotechnology /introduction_en.html