International audience given clear message: North East Life Sciences Sector is open for business

A delegation of international trade experts is heading home today ready to spread the word about the North East of England and the impressive investment opportunities in life sciences and pharmaceuticals our region offers.

Representatives from the international postings of Department of International Trade (DIT) from countries as diverse as Canada, Israel and New Zealand spent the day  with the region’s inward investment and Life Sciences networks to learn more about the strength of the North East’s health and life sciences sector and the world-class inward investment opportunities available.

The visit which was jointly hosted by Invest North East England and the North East LEP, which saw 15 overseas DIT members of staff visit the region from cities across the world, including Auckland, Melbourne, Tokyo, Bangalore, Tel Aviv and Washington DC.

The delegates visited global life sciences firm, Thermo Fisher Scientific, based in Cramlington, Northumberland and heard about the key skills and export opportunities to Europe which have underpinned the company’s success in the region. This was followed by an opportunity to meet with representatives from key regional assets such as NETPark, Science Central and the Centre for Ageing and Vitality and hear from key organisations including the AHSN, First for Pharma, the NIHR Clinical Research Network North East and North Cumbria, CPI and Durham and Newcastle Universities.

David Pattison, Inward Investment Manager at Invest North East England, said: “The North East is a world-class centre of healthcare and life science excellence.

“With more than 165 life sciences-related businesses in the region, we are one of the foremost clusters of life sciences and pharmaceuticals capabilities in the UK with an excellent record of high quality delivery. It was great to able to show these assets to our colleagues at the Department of International Trade (DIT) and to equip them with a clear understanding that the region is a key location for this sector in the UK. We’re confident this will lead to quality enquiries and ultimately result in new inward investment activity and more jobs for our region.”

The health and life sciences sector has been highlighted as one of our region’s key areas of opportunity in the North East LEP’s Strategic Economic Plan.

Teresa Fortune, Life Sciences Programme Lead at the North East LEP said, “Because of our UK leading capability in a number of areas of clinical research, a fantastic public health system and established manufacturing base, we have identified health and life sciences as a growth opportunity in the Strategic Economic Plan. Recent Government and LEP investments in National Centres in areas including Ageing, Formulation, Smart Data, Health Care Photonics and Advanced Therapies are further adding to our capabilities and positioning the North East to be a leading UK centre for health care innovation for the UK and beyond. We were pleased to work with INEE on this event and look forward to it bearing fruit for the region going forward.”

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