Joint Press Statement of European Pharmaceutical Industry Associations on the Commission’s Update on the Progress and Implementation of the European Union Strategic Approach to Pharmaceuticals in the Environment

The members of the Inter-Association Initiative on Pharmaceuticals in the Environment (IAI-PiE) Task Force welcome the publication of the European Commission’s Update and Implementation of the EU Strategic Approach on Pharmaceuticals in the Environment.  As previously communicated, the Task Force - which includes AESGP, EFPIA and Medicines for Europe representing the self-care, innovative, and off-patent pharmaceutical industry (generics, biosimilar and value-added medicines) - supports the Strategy’s holistic lifecycle approach to minimise the impact of pharmaceuticals on the environment and to encourage stakeholders to lead by facilitating exchange of best practices.

As pharmaceutical industry representatives who acknowledge their responsibilities, we have been driving forward the EU Strategic Approach to PiE implementation through numerous industry activities that minimise environmental impact of those medicines that pose a risk to the environment while safeguarding access to effective treatments for patients across all sectors of the pharmaceutical industry.

The associations represented welcome the European Parliament and the Commission’s recognition of industry-led actions, such as the Eco-Pharmaco-Stewardship (EPS) initiative and a number of other initiatives, including the #Medsdisposal campaign to raise awareness on the safe disposal of medicines. The Pharmaceutical industry is supportive of measures that foster research on medicines which are safer for the environment. Industrial research and development on greener manufacturing methods has been increasing, without prejudice to the focus on medicines’ safety and efficacy which remains the pharmaceutical companies’ primary objective.

The above-mentioned healthcare priority concerns are also acknowledged in the European Commission Pharmaceutical Strategy and the European Commission Progress Report on the implementation of the PiE Strategic Approach, in which, emphasis is given to two Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) projects:

  • “iPiE” (Intelligence-led Assessment of Pharmaceuticals in the Environment) – which identified and prioritised medicines that are most likely to present a risk to the environment.,
  • “PREMIER” (Prioritisation and Risk Evaluation of Medicines in the Environment) - which aims to deliver a novel assessment system for characterising the environmental risks of APIs.

The European pharmaceutical industry associations are also working, directly or via member companies on the AMR Industry Alliance, that aims to monitor and manage potential risks from the production of antibiotics on the environment and to build responsible manufacturing effluent management.

The IAI-PiE Task Force broadly supports the policy areas of the European Commission Strategic Approach on PiE and the actions proposed for the coming years, most of which are aligned with the actions that industry has already identified to effectively reduce potential environmental risks. The European pharmaceutical industry also welcomes the increased engagement and lead taken by Member States on various issues through the Pharmaceutical Committee for human medicines action plan.

The pharmaceutical industry remains committed to continue to minimise the impact medicines may have on the environment and we look forward to working with the European Commission and other stakeholders across the areas of work detailed in the European Union Strategic Approach to Pharmaceuticals in the Environment.




AESGP, the Association of the European Self-Care Industry, is representative of manufacturers of non-prescription medicines, food supplements and self-care medical devices in Europe. It is composed of national associations and the main multinational companies manufacturing self-care products. AESGP is the voice of more than 2.000 companies operating in the consumer healthcare sector in Europe, affiliated with AESGP directly or indirectly through the national associations.


European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) The EFPIA represents the biopharmaceutical industry operating in Europe. Through its direct membership of 36 national associations, 39 leading pharmaceutical companies and a growing number of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), EFPIA’s mission is to create a collaborative environment that enables our members to innovate, discover, develop and deliver new therapies and vaccines for people across Europe, as well as contribute to the European economy.


Medicines for Europe represents the generic, biosimilar and value added medicines industries across Europe. Its vision is to provide sustainable access to high quality medicines, based on 5 important pillars: patients, quality, value, sustainability and partnership. Its members directly employ 190,000 people at over 400 manufacturing and 126 R&D sites in Europe, and invest up to 17% of their turnover in R&D investment. Medicines for Europe member companies across Europe are both increasing access to medicines and driving improved health outcomes. They play a key role in creating sustainable European healthcare systems by continuing to provide high quality, effective generic medicines, whilst also innovating to create new biosimilar medicines and bringing to market value added medicines, which deliver better health outcomes, greater efficiency and/or improved safety in the hospital setting for patients. For more information please follow us at and on Twitter @medicinesforEU.