EMA and its 900 highly skilled staff will have, once UK leaves the EU, as many as 20 EU countries to pick from as location for the new headquarter.
The latest country to joining in and askint to host EMA is Portugal. Indeed if Portugal will manage to host the EMA it is likely to have a huge knock-on effect for medical and pharmaceutical industry.
The EMA’s chief role is to act as the regulatory agency deciding if products are safe for the European single market. Two Portuguese ministers visited its HQ in Canary Wharf on Monday and acknowledged that competition to house the agency is going to be stiff across Europe.
The Portuguese minister of health, Adalberto Campos Fernandes, said before the visit: “We have been actively engaged in the European medicine system from its inception and the Portuguese medicine agency, Infarmed, is highly regarded in the assessment procedures of medicines, being one of its major contributors in several roles.”
Lisbon, like almost every candidate city, is touting itself as being committed to the EU, with a cosmopolitan culture and a vibrant medical research industry.