BIOTECHNOLOGY firms in Britain are
extremely sore with the ministry of
health. The statement issued by the
new secretary of state for health,
Stephen Dorrell, criticising the
biotech companies' efforts to
secure special tax treatment, has
broken the morale of the cash-
strapped research organisations
and has left them high and dry.
Dorrell has categorically stated that he is not in favour of tax shelters for the biotech firms, even though his ministry officially sponsors and supports the pharmaceuticals and biotechnology industries. The department of health, according to him, should restrict its funding to "encouraging high technology investment" in the area.
"This is very discouraging," says Paul Haycock, deputy chairperson of the Biotechnology Industry Association. He says that the tax system discriminates against the industry because of the time taken, ranging from 5 to 10 years, to develop a new medicine.
We are a voice to you; you have been a support to us. Together we build journalism that is independent, credible and fearless. You can further help us by making a donation. This will mean a lot for our ability to bring you news, perspectives and analysis from the ground so that we can make change together.
Comments are moderated and will be published only after the site moderator’s approval. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name. Selected comments may also be used in the ‘Letters’ section of the Down To Earth print edition.