AstraZeneca Set to Boost the UK’s Life Sciences Sector with Investment Plans

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New plans laid out by AstraZeneca will see £650 million ($828 million) be invested into the UK.

Global pharmaceutical company, AstraZeneca, has revealed its latest investment plans, which involve spending a total of £650 million ($828 million) within the United Kingdom. This influx of money is expected to boost the country’s life science sector and grow the economy.

In a press release, issued by the UK Government on March 6, 2024, it was announced that AstraZeneca’s investment will be used across Liverpool and Cambridge in the UK. The company’s manufacturing site in Speke, Liverpool will receive £450 million ($573 million), which will be used for the research, development, and manufacture of vaccines. Additionally, AstraZeneca will use the remaining £200 million ($255 million) to expand its presence in Cambridge with a facility that will be built adjacent to its R&D Discovery Centre (DISC), which is already located on the life sciences cluster site.

“We are sticking to our plan to make the UK one of the best places in [the] world to invest in developing and manufacturing new, innovative medicines—both protecting public health and growing our economy,” said Jeremy Hunt, the UK’s Chancellor of the Exchequer, in the press release. “AstraZeneca’s investment plans are a vote of confidence in the attractiveness of UK as a Life Sciences superpower and strengthen our resilience for future health emergencies.”

“AstraZeneca’s planned investment would enhance the UK’s pandemic preparedness and demonstrates our ongoing confidence in UK life sciences,” added Pascal Soriot, CEO of AstraZeneca in the press release. “We will continue to support the UK in driving innovation and patient access, building on the strong foundations which have been put in place.”


Furthermore, adding to the boost that the investment will afford the UK to improve resilience to potential future pandemics and health threats, AstraZeneca and the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) are planning to partner on advancing science for the development and evaluation of vaccines. This partnership will take advantage of the technology at AstraZeneca’s Speke site in Liverpool and also the UKHSA’s Vaccine Development Evaluation Centre at the Porton Down site in Salisbury, UK.

“This investment will bolster the development of the UK’s vaccine capabilities and life sciences sector—critical components of the country’s resilience to future health threats,” explained Dr. Isabel Oliver, chief scientific officer at UKHSA, in the press release. “UKHSA majors on researching and developing new ways to strengthen the country’s defences against all health hazards—including future pandemics—and works routinely with a range of commercial and academic partners. We are looking forward to working with AstraZeneca to collectively protect the population’s health.”

“The UK is a global leader in the research and development of life saving vaccines. Today’s announcement is testament to this country’s Life Science capabilities—and our continued commitment to pandemic preparedness and global health,” stated Victoria Atkins, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care of the United Kingdom, in the press release. “As well as creating new highly skilled jobs, this investment will help maintain the UK’s position at the forefront of tackling emerging diseases, and support our work to make our healthcare system faster, simpler, and fairer.”

Source: UK Gov