European Medicines Agency to Move Its Headquarters to Croatia?

Total Croatia News

Due to Brexit, EMA will have to move from London.

One of the major EU institutions, the European Medicines Agency (EMA), which has an annual budget in excess of 300 million euros and more than 800 employees, is looking for a new headquarters. Due to Brexit, it will have to move from London, and Croatia is one of the candidates for its new home, reports on November 11, 2016.

Croatian MEP Biljana Borzan is convinced that Croatia have a real chance, even though the competition is very strong. Some of the other candidates are Sweden, Spain, Denmark, Italy, Germany and Ireland. Most of these countries have already established special working groups whose only task is to lobby for the EMA, its resources and staff, to move to one of their cities.

A small advantage for Croatia is the fact that Borzan has recently been appointed to represent the European Parliament in relations with EMA, so she met with EMA director Guido Rasi. In conversation with him, she found out the conditions which must be met by the new host country.

“Croatia is not without a chance. Our advantage is the fact that we are one of a few EU member states which does not have an EU institution. Brussels is trying to achieve equal representation of institutions in all parts of the Union. Our geographical position, since we are located in the centre of Europe and in the central time zone, is also a plus. That is important for people who travel to eastern and western Europe. Last year, for example, the EMA headquarters in London recorded more than 300,000 visits by a variety of experts”, said Borzan.

A disadvantage is that Zagreb and Croatia have relatively poor air links with Europe, and there is also the issue of a number of hotel beds. “Our biggest disadvantage is that some countries have already well advanced in lobbying while we have not done anything. The final decision will not be made by the EMA but by the European Council, which means the prime ministers of member states. We should definitely try because it would mean a lot for our hospitality industry, and there would be a large number of new jobs as well”, concluded Borzan.

The EMA building in London has more than 260,000 square metres of area. If the agency were to move to Zagreb, it is clear that it would have to build its new headquarters, which would be an opportunity for Croatia’s construction industry as well.

EMA was founded in 1995 and is one of the most important among the 40 agencies of the European Union. Its main task is to protect and improve human and animal health by controlling medicines which are used for medical and veterinary purposes.


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