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The Dutch lobby to amend Directive 98/44/EC on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions will severely damage the ability of the biotech sector to innovate—and for no tangible reason, says Annemiek Verkamman of HollandBIO.
Life sciences and biotechnology are delivering treatments for an increasing number of unmet medical needs, while infectious diseases are being eradicated through innovative vaccines. Proper protection of intellectual property is a crucial factor for meeting the needs of our society in the near future.
By announcing her intention to amend Directive 98/44/EC on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions in order to benefit just a few Dutch breeders, the Dutch minister for agriculture, Sharon Dijksma, is directly leaving the 600 innovative biotech companies in the Netherlands out in the cold. Amending the biotech directive will block innovation and diminish the global position of the whole European biotech sector. What is the motivation for the change? To solve an alleged problem that is solely based on fear and fable.
Dutch life sciences sector is booming
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