Pharmaceutical Research

PDF version

Pharmaceutical R&D: A Few Key Points

  • In Spain, The pharmaceutical industry is, together with the car industry, the business sector that invests the most in R&D, in front of the other high technological sectors, suck as telecommunications or aeronautics.  According to Farmaindustria’s data, the pharmaceutical companies invested in 2008, 1,010 million euro in R&D.  The thick of this expense was used to clinical tests and they became more than 162 million basic research.
  • The pharmaceutical industry is the business sector that, in Spain, has increased its effort in R&D above its turnover growth.  However, during the period of 2004-06, it is noticed a slow down in the growth of expenses in R&D, but this tendency looks like it had been broken in the last two years, (15,1& in 2007 and 9,6% in 2008) in which it has been registered a growth in R&D higher than that of the five-year period.
  • The research that the pharmaceutical industry did represents approximately 18% of the total R&D done by the Spanish industry.  This way, the pharmaceutical industry becomes a key motor to increase the national business effort in research and like that, decrease the gap between us and Middle Europe.
  • The pharmaceutical industry is the most collaborative sector with Public Research Centers, Universities and Hospital.  It sends 39,2% of its investment (395,7 million euro in 2008) in contracts with the research public system, generated by not only one important current of resources to these centers, but also an enrichment flow of knowledge that benefits the collective research time and to the companies.
  • An important quantity of resources are destined to basic research (163 million euro), being the pharmacist the business sector that invests the most in this area.  Furthermore the research done by companies from the national capital, in Spain, is settle too to investigation centers of world reference of one of the big international companies.
  • Industry is also financed since 2001 in Biomedics Pool of Research in the Health Institute of Carlos III, which contributes resources to public nets of biomedics research in which participating more than 11,000 researchers from 290 centers, distributed all over our national geography, in areas as important as oncology, neurology, infectious illnesses, cardiovascular or transplant.
  • The pharmaceutical business counts with staff 4,786 researchers full time, the majority of them with higher professional qualifications. The creation of this employment in R&D increased 3,9% in taxes analyzed each year between 2006 and 2008.  The employment induced in R&D is more difficult to qualify, but with all the security that the turnoner will be times 3 this amount.
  • Like any other business innovative sector, the pharmaceutical industry needs a stability frame and a conditions' market suitable for their activity development.  In the case of the pharmaceutical industry, there are two elements that provide a special singularity: (i) on one hand, medicines' research takes a lot of time (between 10 to 12 years) risky (only one of 10,000 researched molecules become a product economically feasible) and expensive (the average cost for each research for a new medicine is above 800 million euro); and (ii) on the other hand, it is a sector tremendously interceded in which the state regulator (who controls all the research process, production and marketing of the medicines, include the prices) it is also the main client (3 out of 4 medicines are financed by the Social Security).
  • Consequently, an industry with a long period cicle and severely regulated urgently needs a steady and predictible regulator frame which allows a suitable planification of the investments and a sufficient period of recuperation from them.  Therefore, the fundamental demand that industry proposes to the Administration is the recognition of the innovation through prices'politics and bring together Spain and the EU in material of medicines' industrial property rights' protection.  The sector does not claim public aid, since it is thought to assume the investment risks, if it is recognized through the market, meaning, the prices.  Nonetheless, to have prices that pay innovation does not mean it is guaranteed that companies will succeed; they do not compete againts each other:  in the end, and as it usually happens in all the sectors, only tha market (clinical practice) will establish what products are successful.
  • All over Europe, and in spit of all the budget restrictions, the most intelligent and proactive Governments develop industrial politics that allow to combine the objectives of growth of the pharmaceutical expense with the competitiveness of their companies.  Spain cannot allow itself to ignore the sector that brings the most to the country in means of R&D.  On the contrary, the excelent qualification of our professionals and our researchers are still attraction factors to investers that have to be used wisely, like other countries have done with us in the past.
  • R&D in the Pharmaceutcal Industry 2010
  • R&D in the Pharmaceutical Industry 2009  
  • R&D in the Pharmaceutical Industry 2008
  • R&D in the Pharmaceutical Industry 2007
  • R&D in the Pharmaceutical Industry 2006
  • R&D in the Pharmaceutical Industry 2005

Esta página web se realizó en 2009 con apoyo financiero del Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación y de los Fondos FEDER. Dentro del PN de investigación Científica, Desarrollo e Innovación Tecnológica 2008-2011. Ref. RET-90000-2008-001