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Manufacturing activities, employment and trade
The pharmaceutical sector is of great relevance for the EU’s manufacturing and knowledgebased
economy. It accounts for approximately 3.5% of total EU manufacturing value added
and for 17% of total private sector research and development investments (EFPIA 2010).
Moreover, the sector directly employs approximately 633,100 people in 2008, up from 500,000
in 1990. The sector employed 113,400 in research and development (R&D). Germany and
France employ the most followed by the UK and Italy (see Figure 10). These numbers,
however, do not include the thousands of researchers in universities, hospitals and other
clinical settings who work closely with the pharmaceutical industry (EFPIA 2010).
The United States, by comparison, employs a total of 686,422 directly, with 90,712 people in
R&D, including support staff.3 Japan employs almost 120,000.
The EU is one of the leading producers of pharmaceuticals globally. Pharmaceutical
manufacturing activities can be divided into medicines covered by patent protection and those
whose patents have expired: for the later, competing manufacturers produce “generic”