A group comprising UK clinicians and medical technology companies have been be visiting California this week (23-29 September 2017) in a bid to forge stronger relationships across the State.
As the UK enters a new era for trade and business, the UK Government has highlighted MedTech, and the broader Life Sciences sector, as having a critical role in its Industrial Strategy, to propel UK productivity once it leaves the EU. The Californian mission follows last year’s successful Texan equivalent.
MedTech is now worth over £17 billion to the UK and is part of a £64 billion industry that is UK Life Sciences.
Supported by the UK Government, the mission aims to strengthen export links between the UK and California and create demand for UK-designed healthcare technologies. Indeed the government recently announced nearly £169 million of funding to support the life science sector off the back of the independently-led life sciences report. The Life Sciences Industrial Strategy report has been welcomed by senior government ministers, and provides the framework for increased funding and support for the sector.
How it worked is that the UK’s MedTech trade association, the Association of British Healthcare Industries (ABHI), asked its 260 Members to identify key markets for future international relationships. Unsurprisingly, the U.S was flagged as vital.
Throughout the seven-day trip, UK companies have exhibited their innovative technologies at the MedTech Conference, the leading conference for MedTech officials in North America. Such is the importance of the visit, the conference was attended by Lord David Prior, the UKs Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
UK Government comments
Commenting on the visit, Lord Prior said: “The Life Science sector is hugely important to the health of the UK economy, with a turnover of £64 billion in 2016, employing nearly 235,000 people. The recently published independent Life Sciences Industrial Strategy demonstrates the world-class expertise the UK already has in this area and I welcome the opportunity to champion the sector and support the work the ABHI are doing here in the U.S.”