Ensuring U.S. Biopharmaceutical Competitiveness

By Stephen Ezell, Information Technology and Innovation Foundation



▪ The biopharmaceutical industry makes important contributions to the U.S. economy, including employing over 500,000 workers making 1.4 times the U.S. earnings average.
▪ The United States leads the world on most indices of R&D investment and innovation. From 2004 to 2018, U.S.-headquartered firms produced almost twice as many new drugs as did firms in Europe, and 3 to 4 times as many as Japan.
▪ Despite U.S. strengths in biopharmaceutical R&D and innovation, manufacturing has dropped. From 2009 to 2018, real value-added output in pharmaceutical and medicines manufacturing fell by nearly one-third.
▪ Partly as a consequence, the U.S. trade balance in pharmaceuticals has grown from a deficit of $16 billion in 2010 to a deficit of $77 billion in 2019.
▪ Calls for reshoring more biopharmaceutical manufacturing should distinguish between mature manufacturing processes and those still evolving, as in continuous process biomanufacturing, where U.S.-based production can enjoy unique strengths.
▪ America must continually bolster its biopharmaceutical leadership position, especially as China implements ever-more aggressive policies to improve their life-sciences competitiveness, not only in production but also in innovation.
▪ To support the sector, policymakers should focus on:

1) maintaining strengths, including
in pricing, tech transfer, and intellectual property;

2) spurring domestic innovation;

3) spurring increased domestic production; and

4) combatting foreign mercantilism.

Download the full report HERE.