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BPI SAYS GERMAN GENETIC ENGINEERING BILL IS 'STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION'

 Frankfurt am Main, Germany, April 20 /PRNewswire/ -- In principle, the Association of the German Pharmaceutical Industry (Bundesverband der Pharmazeutischen Industrie) (BPI) welcomes the planned amendment of the Genetic Engineering Act currently before the German parliament. The high German safety standard will, of course, be maintained. Therefore, the draft bill is only a first step in the right direction. With regard to what is necessary, it is only a "small-scale" solution for the pharmaceutical industry. From an objective viewpoint, however, it is all the Federal Government can do at the moment because of existing EC provisions.
 BPI is pleased that notification and approval procedures for the lower safety levels will be simplified and shortened. In particular the research sector will benefit from these improvements. The equal treatment of activities for research purposes and activities for commercial purposes at safety level 1 is seen in a positive light.
 However, industry rejects a generally accessible public register of all granted approvals of safety levels 2-4. Such a register would result in competitive disadvantages for the German industry, because in all approval procedures confidential information is submitted.
 The pharmaceutical industry needs amendments of the European Community directives on genetic engineering so that the latest state of science and technology can be met. Together with the amendment of the Genetic Engineering Act the Federal Parliament and the Federal Council should adopt a motion for a resolution, emphasizing the intention of the German Government to urgently demand amendments of relevant EC directives.
 -0- 4/20/93
 /CONTACT: Elke Peters, economic press section of BPI, in Frankfurt: 49-69-2556-1220/


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Date:Apr 20, 1993
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