New Medicines Manufacturing Industry Partnership formally established to boost medicines manufacturing in the UK

The MMIP Steering Group will be led by Ian McCubbin, GlaxoSmithKline Senior Vice President for the North America, Japan and Global Pharma Supply Chain. The initial work will be focused around industry needs across a number of priority areas including the technology, fiscal, regulatory and skills environments, as well as the promotion overseas of the UK’s strengths in medicines manufacturing.

As an immediate first step, the MMIP is jointly resourcing a team with the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) to help the sector more effectively navigate and draw on public investments and funding mechanisms which are already in place to drive UK competitiveness in medicines manufacturing.

Commenting on the formal launch of the partnership, ABPI Chief Executive Stephen Whitehead, said:

“In light of the changing biopharmaceutical landscape, the ABPI is delighted to take a leading role in establishing this important initiative which will ensure that the UK has the capability to be a global leader in medicines manufacturing. It will draw on the resources and commitment of industry, government and other relevant stakeholders to create an ambitious joint work programme on manufacturing technology, innovation, skills and regulation. We welcome the government’s ongoing support for the industry and I believe that the recent appointment of George Freeman MP as the new Life Sciences Minister will provide the impetus for further close collaboration with Government on the medicines manufacturing agenda”.

Commenting, BIA Chief Executive Officer Steve Bates, said:

“The UK’s research and development capabilities are world class and we are now seeking to put medicines manufacturing on a similar footing. The foundations are strong and we anticipate that this new industry partnership will build on these fundamentals.

“Of particular note is the MMIP’s focus on existing funding mechanisms and ensuring that industry is utilising these to their full potential. The UK life sciences sector benefits from a supportive government and competitive fiscal environment, yet we believe more can be done to maximise these advantages, specifically in medicines manufacturing. Accordingly, the MMIP will look to clarify current fiscal incentives to ensure wider uptake from the sector. We believe through activities such as this, the MMIP will help to ensure the UK is established as a world-class destination for medicines manufacturing both by supporting existing facilities, and encouraging re-shoring.”

Commenting, George Freeman MP Minister for Life Sciences, said:

“The manufacture of modern medicines is one of our leading manufacturing sectors, with exports worth over £22 billion. The Medicines Manufacturing Industry Partnership is helping ensure we remain at the forefront of this highly competitive sector, building on the impressive work they have already led in areas like detailed innovation mapping, and modern skills investment.”

Ian McCubbin, leader of the MMIP Steering Group, said:

“The UK has a strong foundation in manufacturing and it is vital that this partnership works to differentiate, defend and grow the existing industry base, so that we continue to be a major export earner and create opportunities to cement the UK’s position as a world leading centre for medicines manufacturing.”

Notes to editors

  • In support of MMIP the ABPI is recruiting a Project Director to lead and co-ordinate the resources that partners are devoting to the work of the MMIP, including liaison with other trade associations
  • The UK medicines industry is one of our leading manufacturing sectors, generating a trade surplus of £4.9 billion in 2012
  • UK data shows the Gross Value Add (GVA) per employee for pharmaceutical manufacture was £149,000 in 2012 - significantly higher than any other manufacturing sector
  • Medicines manufacturing is shifting away from the dominance of small molecules to one with a balance between small molecules, biologics and cell and gene therapy. In 2012, 84% of the global pharmaceutical market by value was small molecules and 16% biologics/cell and gene therapies. The pipeline suggests that this will move towards a 50/50 split
  • The small molecule platform is also expected to see significant evolution in coming years with greater use of biocatalysis, continuous processing and novel dosage form
  • The Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) is the UK’s innovation network. It brings together businesses, entrepreneurs, academics and funders to develop new products, processes and services. The KTN is free to join and is funded by Innovate UK. For more information about the KTN visit:

Background information

About the ABPI

The ABPI represents innovative research-based biopharmaceutical companies, large, medium and small, leading an exciting new era of biosciences in the UK.
Our industry, a major contributor to the economy of the UK, brings life-saving and life-enhancing medicines to patients. Our members supply 90 per cent of all medicines used by the NHS, and are researching and developing over two-thirds of the current medicines pipeline, ensuring that the UK remains at the forefront of helping patients prevent and overcome diseases.
The ABPI is recognised by government as the industry body negotiating on behalf of the branded pharmaceutical industry, for statutory consultation requirements including the pricing scheme for medicines in the UK.

BioIndustry Association

Founded 25 years ago at the infancy of biotechnology, the BioIndustry Association (BIA) is the trade association for innovative enterprises involved in UK bioscience. Members include emerging and more established bioscience companies; pharmaceutical companies; academic, research and philanthropic organisations; and service providers to the bioscience sector. The BIA represents the interests of its members to a broad section of stakeholders, from government and regulators to patient groups and the media. Our goal is to secure the UK's position as a global hub and as the best location for innovative research and commercialisation, enabling our world-leading research base to deliver healthcare solutions that can truly make a difference to people's lives.

For further information, please go to and


ABPI Press Office
Email: [email protected]
Phone: +44 (0) 20 7747 1411
Mobile: +44 (0) 7808 641811

Pamela Learmonth
Director of Public Affairs and Communications, BioIndustry Association
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 020 7630 2188

More within