Strategic Autonomy in Health? The issue of Global Access
09 May 2023 15:00 - 16:30
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In Europe and in Africa, shortage of medical products raises questions about people’s ability to access the medical assistance they need. In the midst of growing medicine shortages, the only producer of certain generic medicines in the Netherlands was recently at risk to disappear. Dependency on a small group of producers is a risk challenging strategic autonomy in public health in the EU and other places. Particularly Africa is considered a region at risk as it struggles with local production of medicines needed for a growing population.

The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted critical dependencies and the necessity of securing, and diversifying, the supply of medical products. The Dutch Global Health Strategy explicitly underlines the need to expand local production worldwide and strengthen supply mechanisms in order to improve health systems and contribute to pandemic preparedness. The topic is also included  in the recent EU global health strategy and takes centre stage at the G20 in India in April as well as a WHO Forum on local production of medicines and other health technologies to take place in the Netherlands, later in 2023. 

Questions to explore

  • What does strategic autonomy in medical products mean in Europe and what does it mean in Africa?
  • What is the African public health perspective on this issue?
  • What role can the EU and the Netherlands play regarding technology transfer and IP sharing and protection?
  • What is the role for the Netherlands to increase local production at home and elsewhere?


  • Dr. Raji Tajudeen, Head Division of Public Health institutes and research at Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Ellen ‘t Hoen, University of Groningen, Medicines Law & Policy
  • Matthew Downham, Director of Manufacturing & Supply Chain networks at CEPI

Moderators: Louise van Schaik, Head of Unit EU & Global Affairs, and Remco van de Pas, Senior Research Associate, the Clingendael Institute 

This webinar will be streamed via Zoom . If you would like to ask question Join Zoom.

Global Health Webinar Series

This is the third and final in a series of online events that explores the complexities around shaping and implementing a multi-sectoral global health strategy, contextualises this within the ongoing policy debates in the Netherlands and focuses on putting strategies into practice. In previous events, we have looked at the great challenges in global health in the wake of the pandemic and at addressing global health in an environmental context.

This Clingendael event is cofinanced by Cordaid, KNCV and Aidsfonds.