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EU status enables Poland's pharma industry to flourish

Regional connections prove to be invaluable, as Poland's healthcare landscape has benefitted greatly from the country's accession to the European Union (EU), claims a new report by healthcare experts GlobalData.

The new report* cites that Poland's break from communist rule in 1989 led the country's economy to grow from strength to strength, and the country's accession to the EU in 2004 secured the nation as a vital part of the European healthcare industry.

Since joining the EU, Poland's economic growth has outpaced that of the US and its EU partners. Furthermore, only Poland has avoided falling into recession since the financial crisis began. The country boasted economic growth, progress in per capita income, and a growth in GDP per capita in comparison to the EU-27 average during the widespread financial turbulence, and this success was partially due to the benefits of its EU membership.

Poland's EU status has provided priceless opportunities in terms of healthcare financing, reimbursement, and access to new medical technologies and expertise. Cross-border trading and harmonized tariff rates support Poland in boosting its trade and economy. In addition, the country is building up its reputation as a location for R&D investment within eastern Europe and worldwide, following the upgrade of its manufacturing and production facilities to EU standards, and the implementation of European-standard Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs).

These stringent regulations have also led Poland to emerge as a pharmaceutical export hub for other nearby European countries. Poland follows the well-established regulatory system set down by the European Medicines Agency (EMA), meaning that the marketing authorization of any new drug can be rolled out across Europe.

However, Poland still has problems to overcome before it reaches its full potential. Slow administration, corruption and lacking infrastructure all pose as hurdles to growth in the healthcare market. Patent laws and strong data protection are not yet in place, and their absence is a barrier to multinational companies embracing Polish R&D opportunities.

The Polish pharmaceutical market is growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 6.8% and is expected to reach $17.1 billion by 2020. Increased production capacity, more exports and further regulatory reforms will help the market to establish itself in the EU region.
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