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GSK supports UK-Australia FTA negotiations

Both Australia and the UK are global leaders in health innovation and have world leading capabilities in areas important to our business. Both countries are home to leading public healthcare systems, respected Health Technology Assessment (HTA) processes for medicines and vaccines, and the UK and Australian governments demonstrate an interest in nurturing the pharmaceutical sector for growth and investment. We are proud to have a strong presence in both countries and to play a key role in driving innovation to address public health challenges.

GSK is a strong supporter of international trade, as it encourages business productivity and innovation, enhances competitiveness, lowers the costs of goods and services and can help developing countries further progress their economic development and integration. For our sector, these are positive factors as they are in our patient’s interests and enable greater access to medicines for those who need them; and during the current pandemic, governments and key stakeholders, including consumers, have seen first-hand the importance of the free flow of medicines, vaccines and medical supplies. More broadly, GSK supports actions in multilateral platforms aiming at removing tariff barriers and so ensuring that medicines and vaccines can circulate freely. This will increase the resilience of pharmaceutical supply chains by reducing and eliminating trade barriers for the benefit of patients, who should have greater access to lifesaving and life-enhancing new medicines and vaccines.

Headquartered in the United Kingdom (UK), GSK operates in over 100 markets worldwide. We have a proud history of operating in Australia since the early 1900s. In Australia, our business is strong and sustainable, reporting total revenues of AUD788 million in 2019. Across Australia, we employ approximately 1200 staff in areas of expertise from medicines to manufacturing and at all levels, from industry-based learning programs for students through to senior executives.

GSK is committed to developing and producing innovative new medicines and vaccines, and we stand ready to play our part in ensuring access for the people who need them. We are a leading biopharmaceutical and consumer healthcare company, with three global businesses that research, develop and manufacture innovative medicines, vaccines and consumer healthcare products. Our mission is to improve the quality of human life by enabling people to do more, feel better and live longer.

Australian natural supplement company taking on the UK

Sydney-based Phytologic Holdings specialises in science-backed natural health care products – with the company name relating to the concept of ‘plant science’ – which CSO, Cindy Zang, says is their core passion.

Phytologic is the owner and distributer of 3 brands: Henry Blooms, Anthogenol® (an antioxidant) and Rochway (a niche nutraceutical and probiotic range) which are all manufactured in Australia. The most recent addition to their vertically integrated group, is the only Australian manufactured Probiotic API (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient).

Although Phytologic exports to a variety of regions around the globe, the UK is a key focus market for future growth. While many of their products are currently bought and sold in the UK through private/independent retailers/wholesalers, they have faced tariff and non-tariff customs barriers which have affected the competitiveness of their products in the UK. They are looking to the Australia-UK FTA to potentially address some of these barriers.

Why Business input for FTAs is vital

The Australian Government encourages interested people and organisations to make submissions on Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). Consultations are held with, and submissions accepted from, a wide range of stakeholders, including:

  • state and territory governments
  • peak industry bodies
  • individual companies
  • academics
  • unions
  • consumer groups
  • interested individuals

You can make a submission to the Australia-UK FTA here.

All submissions are usually published as public documents on the DFAT website. However, information which is of a confidential nature or which is submitted in-confidence, can be treated as such, provided the basis for such treatment is provided.