Prime Minister addresses world leaders in life science industry


2016 09 14


‘Vilnius has turned into an impressive place for the trend-setters in life sciences and the industry’, said Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius  addressing the 3rd international Life Sciences Baltics Forum, having convened scientists, businesses, life sciences industry leaders, ministers and other representatives of the public sector.

According to the Head of Government, it was back in 2012, when an ambitious initiative was born to gather experts, leading professionals and stakeholders for exploring and accelerating the potential of the Baltic region in the sector. Today, fresh with new people and ideas, the Forum continues to build on its core values and principles, namely by focusing on the most important societal issues, building partnerships, making use of knowledge transfer, business opportunities and market penetration.

‘Lithuania is proud of a well-developed life-science industry with its annual growth of more than 20% and exports to over 70 countries. The recent large-scale public investment in life-science Research and Development infrastructure has made Lithuania an attractive country to work with’, said the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister noted that Lithuania seeks to become a European Hub in health technologies and biotechnology by 2020. To support this, the Government of Lithuania has invested 400 million EUR into state-of-the-art infrastructure. Five science and technology valleys provide for favourable conditions for the interaction between the research, studies and business.

According to the Prime Minister, the true champions are biotechnology, pharma and medical devices contributing with an exceptionally large part of the GDP. The two decades of industrial leadership have turned these sectors into the most developed in the Central and Eastern Europe region. Our biopharmaceutical and MedTech products made their way to the most regulated markets around the world.

‘I trust that by coming to Vilnius you identified your personal and institutional objectives. Be open, engage and network. This is the place and the time  for the most revolutionary and innovative ideas to share. And I wish everyone a great event. I am confident that we will re-join there, in Vilnius, in 2018’, said the Head of Government.

In the framework of Life Sciences Baltics the Prime Minister met with President of Japan’s Medical Research and Development Agency (AMED), Makoto Suematsu, to discuss cooperation in the field of life sciences and the bilateral cooperation.

‘We see Japan as our strong and reliable economic and trade partner. However, there are still many opportunities to develop our relations in science and education. The Lithuanian Government encourages businesses and science and innovation leaders to cooperate with partners in Japan, including in the field of life sciences’, said the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister also noted Lithuania’s initiated and sent over to Japan an Inter-ministerial agreement proposal on cooperation in science and technology, expressing hope about its early signature by both parties.

The forum Life Sciences Baltics had among its participants 15 representatives from Japan, including 5 speakers, also the President of AMED M. Suematsu. AMED is a government agency that coordinates the activities of all the relevant ministries and other departments in the field of medical research, with the budget of over a billion euros a year. Established back in 2015, the Agency has the power to organize, execute and control medical research in Japan and international cooperation in this field.

AMED representatives will also visit the University of Vilnius, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, National Cancer Centre, the Joint Centre for Life Sciences, Genetics Centre, and they have expressed intention to start projects with Lithuania in the fields of oncology, genetics, aging and chronic diseases.

Life Sciences Baltics forum is attended by over 1,000 guests from 40 countries of the world. There are numerous life sciences representatives from Israel, Japan, the United States and other countries with well-developed life science markets.