Recommendations for an improved investment situation and funding practice in Germany

Fundamental, economic challenges in the research and application of innovative technologies in contrast to established industries are:

  • high capital requirements
  • high research risk
  • long development times

Taking the number of patents, which led to spin-off companies in the EU6 countries (Germany, France, Great Britain, Italy, Netherlands and Spain) as a basis for comparing the efficiency of technology transfer in these countries, this shows according to the study of P. Giuri et al. a significant disadvantage of Germany: In these six States resulted average 5.1 percent of the patents in spin-offs, but in Germany it were only 2.7 percent, in the UK and Spain even almost 10 percent.

In order to sustainably secure Germany as a research and production base and to maintain its competitiveness in the world market, efficient legal and structural conditions, e.g. fiscal and/or regulatory measures have to be created. To determine the effect of governmental measures, they should also be regularly evaluated by an independent body.

OECD forecast

Although currently only about 2 percent of the total R&D investment of the OECD biotech companies flow into the field of industrial biotechnology, the OECD study The Bioeconomy to 2030 predicts that in future industrial biotechnology will add up to 39 percent of the total gross value added.

Currently, the lion's share of 87 percent of investments flows into the health sector, despite the fact that OECD forecasts this field only a 25 percent share of the total gross value added in 2030. In Germany itself, the situation is even more extreme; see "Industry and Green Economy".

Among others, the still unfavorable political conditions reflect the extreme imbalance between the low investment in industrial biotechnology and its potentially high contribution to the overall future economic growth.