• No results found


In document the New Zealand Biotechnology Sector (Page 101-152)

Chapter 4 Biotechnology in New Zealand

4.1 Introduction

estimated to spend around NZ$127m per year on biotechnology-related research (Ogilvie, 2003), ranging from genomics to processing of natural products including about NZ$18 million on research involving genetic modification (Wright, 2000, p.7). Biotechnology-related research comprises around 19% of total government R&D spending ($677 million in 2002/20031), making New Zealand one of three OECD countries with a share above 10% (OECD, 2003a).

Genesis has invested over NZ$80 million in research since its inception in 1994 while CRIs and companies such as Auckland UniServices have also been successful in generating research revenue from outside the government sector.

Nonetheless it must be recognised that New Zealand’s total expenditure on biotechnology research is very small by global standards.

Few innovations or processes in modern biotechnology have reached the stage of being commercialised. Genesis Research and Development is perhaps one of the closest to achieving income from a new biotechnology product; it initiated additional US phase II clinical trials of its PVAC Psoriasis treatment in June 2002; one of over 300 biotech products now in phase II or phase III trials2 (Ernst

& Young, 1999b, p. 35).

Over the last few years there has been an explosion of interest in biotechnology in New Zealand. Politicians and policy makers have become increasingly interested in the role that biotech might play in the ‘new economy’; and aware of the policy initiatives in support of biotech which have been implemented by many of our competitors. The biotech industry has begun to achieve critical mass and has been increasingly effective in lobbying for policy changes that would make New Zealand more supportive of biotech R&D and innovation. At the same time,

1See Ministry of Research Science and Technology. (2002). Briefing to the Incoming Minister of Research, Science and Technology.

2 Clinical trials in the United States are conducted in phases. In Phase II trials, the study drug or treatment is given to a group of 100-300 people to see if it is effective and to further evaluate its safety. In Phase III trials, the study drug or treatment is given to large groups of people (1,000-3,000) to confirm its effectiveness, monitor side effects, compare it to commonly used treatments, and collect information that will allow the drug or treatment to be used safely. Source


PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

increasing levels of popular concern over the safety of some modern biotechnologies culminated in the setting up of the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification that spent over $6 million and 14 months listening to all sides of the debate. In October 2001 the government announced its response to the Royal Commission report, including permission for field trials to restart and a two-year ban on commercial release of genetically modified products3.

In early 2002 the Government released its Growth and Innovation Framework (GIF), which aims to return New Zealand to the top half of the OECD in terms of GDP per capita. The GIF identified three potential growth areas that were worthy of special attention and government effort. These were information and communications technology, creative industries and biotechnology. Task forces were established in all three areas to agree priorities and develop action plans to stimulate growth and develop international competitiveness. The Biotechnology Task Force report was published in May 2003 and focuses on “three essential areas”:

a) the need to build critical mass;

b) the introduction of a package of regulatory reform to create a competitive environment for growth; and

c) the establishment of a robust international network through which to stimulate the flow of international investment” (Biotechnology Taskforce, 2003, p. 3).

In the same month, the government published the New Zealand Biotechnology Strategy. The strategy aims to promote growth in biotechnology and draws on the work of the biotechnology taskforce. The strategy document includes the vision statement that:

New Zealand responsibly develops and applies our world-class biological knowledge, skills, innovation and technologies to benefit the wealth, health and environment of New Zealanders, now and in the future (Ministry of Research Science and Technology, 2003a, p. 3).

It goes on to define three goals that support the Government vision for biotechnology:

3 This was lifted, amidst much vocal opposition and lobbying, in October 2003.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

1. Build understanding about biotechnology and constructive engagement between people in the community and the biotechnology sector.

2. Grow New Zealand’s biotechnology sector to enhance economic and community benefits.

3. Manage the development and introduction of new biotechnologies with a regulatory system that provides robust safeguards and allows innovation.


Data Sources and Sector Size

Research into the potential impact of modern biotechnology on New Zealand dates back to a 1983 discussion paper published by the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR). The authors aimed to assess the significance for New Zealand industry of new developments in biotechnology and also made suggestions “on aspects of research and development which require emphasis if the perceived industrial opportunities are to be realised” (Hunt et al., 1983). This was followed in 1988 by a Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) study that aimed “to identify the impediments affecting the growth and development of biotechnology in New Zealand and to recommend any action the Government and/or department could take to overcome these impediments” (this has many parallels with the task assigned to the Biotechnology Task Force in 2003). DSIR and DTI did not attempt to quantify biotech activity in New Zealand but did identify 40-50 separate organisations working in the biotech sector.

Kennedy and Davis (1994) assessed the impact of biotechnology on New Zealand industry over the period 1984-94 identifying around 504 separate organisations that were making direct use of biotechnology. They did not attempt an “all inclusive review of New Zealand Biotechnology because of the difficulties with the definition of the term biotechnology, and the difficulty in obtaining commercial and confidential information” (Kennedy & Davies, 1994, p. 2).

4.2.1 Estimates by Tradenz

An early attempt to put a monetary value on New Zealand biotech activity was conducted by Tradenz, based on a series of interviews with representatives from

4 The precise number varies depending on definition of a separate organisation, and approach taken to subsequent mergers and other organisational changes.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

“companies, universities, research and development organisations and professional advisors” (Tradenz, 1994, p. 44). The authors classified the biotech industry into three groups using a broad definition of biotechnology and made estimates of turnover and foreign exchange revenue in each group, see Table 4.1.

Table 4.1 Tradenz Estimates of Biotech Turnover and Foreign Exchange Earnings in 1994

Group Description Members Turnover

$ million


$ million 1 Companies and

organisations of a research and development nature which are primarily concerned with the creation of intellectual property in the medical and veterinary field, and to a limited extent its commercialisation

Universities, Crown research institutes Technology development companies

100 10

2 Companies processing and marketing

biologically active products - mainly meat, dairy and marine

Processing and marketing Companies (includes nutraceuticals)

150 120

3 Companies manufacturing and marketing generic pharmaceuticals

Pharmaceutical Companies

80 7

All Groups 330 137

Source: Tradenz (1994, p. 44)

Tradenz concluded that total turnover was around NZ$330 million with foreign exchange receipts of around NZ$137 million (around 0.7% of total merchandise exports). Industry estimates of growth rates for different categories of firm ranged from 16 to 25% per annum. These figures exclude traditional areas such as dairy and other food production e.g. New Zealand Dairy Exports of NZ$4.6 billion in 1998/9. By including biotechnology in traditional food applications (Cheese, yoghurt, beer) and natural health products including deer velvet, BIOTENZ (1998) predicted that the industry could have a turnover of NZ$7-11 billion in 2010.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

4.2.2 The 1998/99 Biotechnology Survey

The most comprehensive attempt to quantify biotech activity in New Zealand was commissioned by the Ministry of Research Science and Technology (MORST) in 1999. The main purpose was to “produce statistics concerning the present position of this industry in New Zealand” in order to “take stock of the current situation for planning purposes”(Statistics New Zealand, 2000b, p. 1). The survey was intended to focus only on modern biotechnology since it was thought that “the contribution to future economic development resulting from modern biotechnology is likely to be much greater than the potential contribution by its traditional counterpart”. The objectives5 of the survey were:

i. To understand the present status, the structure and the future progression of the biotechnology industry in New Zealand

ii. To assess the present status of strategic alliances, the links with the public / private research system and the potential for cluster development for the biotechnology industry

iii. To provide a baseline on the utilisation of resources including the knowledge in the biotechnology industry against which progress could be compared at a future date

iv. To identify the enabling factors and constraints facing the biotechnology industry in New Zealand

The 1998/99 survey of modern biotechnology activity in New Zealand was conducted by Statistics New Zealand in 2000 with the results being published in April 20016. Questionnaires7 were sent out to 426 enterprises that had been identified as possible users of modern biotechnology processes. The survey achieved a 98% response rate with 180 enterprises being identified as users of at least one biotechnology process. The high response rate and wide ranging processes used to identify possible users of modern biotechnology suggest that the

5 Source: Ministry of Research, Science and Technology (2000) Draft Objectives for the Biotechnology Survey.

6 Statistics New Zealand. (2001). Modern Biotechnology Activity in New Zealand. Wellington.

7 The questionnaire for this survey is included as Appendix 5.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

survey is likely to have captured almost all significant users of modern biotech in New Zealand over the survey period (1998/99).

The survey also included enterprises that use traditional biotech processes (TBU).

Estimates on the size of the traditional biotech ‘sector’ cannot be regarded as being complete since a significant numbers of other users of such processes were not included in the survey, or reported that they did not use modern biotech and so did not fill in the questionnaire. For example 33 ‘local authority’ enterprises reported use of biotech processes – primarily for treatment of sewage and wastewater but around 20 reported no involvement.

Marsh (2001b) extensively re-analysed the SNZ dataset8. He reported that around 80 biotech respondents conducted R&D; 57 of these conducted R&D into modern processes. Marsh also applied the Statistics Canada definition of a biotech enterprise to the SNZ data set ((Marsh, 2001b, p. 26). Based on this definition, the New Zealand biotech sector consisted in 1998/99 of 39 biotech enterprises with income from biotech of $205 million.

4.2.3 The 2002 Biotechnology Survey

In 2002 Marsh (2002) designed and implemented a survey of all enterprises in New Zealand that used modern biotech processes and/or all enterprises that conducted R&D using biotech processes (modern or traditional), see Appendix 3.

Data from this survey are used in this chapter to describe biotechnology in New Zealand and are used to test a series of key hypotheses about the determinants of innovation (see chapter 6).

8 This included preparation of additional tables and cross tabulations; presentation and analysis of the data in alternative formats; and breakdowns based on four new respondent categories (see

on page 99). Some of his results presented here may appear to conflict with those published by Statistics New Zealand. This is mainly explained by different treatment of multiple responses from single enterprises.

Figure 4.1

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

The 2002 survey was conducted by the author, in order to address research questions not covered in the 1998/99 biotech survey. The questionnaire was designed and drafted based on an iterative process involving consideration of:

i. the data that should ideally be used to test the hypotheses;

ii. the data or indicators that have been used in previous studies;

iii. the outcome of those studies; and

iv. the data or indicators that New Zealand respondents were likely to be willing and able to provide.

International experience in the practice of surveys of innovation and biotechnology was reviewed; particularly Community Innovation Surveys conducted in the EU e.g. (Muzart, 1998) etc, OECD innovation surveys (OECD, 2002a), OECD studies of biotechnology e.g. (van Beuzekom, 2001) and Statistics Canada biotechnology surveys e.g. (McNiven, 2001a; Pattinson, Van Beuzekom,

& Wyckoff, 2001). An extended email discussion was also held with staff at Statistics Canada; the first national statistical organisation to implement a comprehensive biotechnology survey.

Survey design took account of New Zealand experience with studies of innovation and biotechnology; most notably lessons learned in the conduct and analysis of the 1998/99 survey of modern biotechnology; see (Marsh, 2001c), R&D expenditure surveys e.g. (Ministry of Research Science and Technology, 2002) and business practices surveys; see (Statistics New Zealand, 2002). Survey design was also discussed with government (MoRST and SNZ) and representatives of the biotechnology industry. A detailed research proposal was written up and circulated for comment. Ethical approval was secured from the Waikato Management School ethics committee.

The study population was defined as ‘all enterprises using modern9 biotech processes and/or all enterprises conducting R&D using biotech processes (modern or traditional)’. Inclusion of enterprises that conduct R&D using modern and traditional processes allowed investigation into the differences between these

9 List based definition see Appendix 2.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

organisations. Enterprises that use traditional processes only and do not carry out R&D were excluded for both practical and theoretical reasons. In practice, they are not well suited to a study of innovation as they tend to exhibit low innovation rates and an unwillingness to participate in voluntary innovation surveys. From a theoretical perspective these enterprises are of less interest since the hypotheses tested focus on factors affecting innovative output and innovation rate – rather than why enterprises are, or are not innovative. It should also be noted that these enterprises would not normally10 be regarded as being part of the biotech ‘sector’.

Enterprises contacted were identified from a database of all biotech enterprises in New Zealand built up over three-year period 1999-2002. Entries in the data base are based on data from a variety of sources including:

i. the NZBA web directory;

ii. firms and organisations attending NZBA conferences;

iii. the BIOTENZ website;

iv. A’Courts and other commercial directories;

v. internet searches;

vi. print media articles (internet searches based on key words such as biotech, gene etc);

vii. the website of the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification;

viii. the FRST website; and

ix. published sources e.g. Kennedy & Davies (1994) and Packer, Robertson, &

Wansbrough (1998).

A total of 146 questionnaires were sent out in April 2002. Responses were received from 93 enterprises indicating a ‘crude’ response rate of 64%. The sample frame was adjusted to 138 enterprise units by subtracting enterprises that reported that they were not involved in biotech. Sixty one usable responses were received indicating a ‘usable’ response rate of 44%. Further details of the 2002 survey are included in Appendix 3.

10 In the economic literature and in international statistics.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

4.2.4 Overview of Sector Size Estimates

Recent attempts to quantify New Zealand biotech activity are summarised in Table 4.2. It may be seen that different interpretations of the terms biotechnology and biotechnology sector continue to hinder attempts to measure biotech activity in a way that is comparable over time and across nations.

Ernst and Young publish annual reports on the state of the biotech industry in various countries (Ernst & Young, 1999a, 1999b); in their survey of the Australian industry they identified 120 core biotechnology companies. They excluded not-for-profit enterprises and traditional biotechnology operations and defined ‘core biotechnology’ companies as “those whose business is entirely or substantially biotechnology related and that have a significant commitment to technological innovation”. Based on this definition there were around 30 core biotech enterprises in New Zealand in 1998/9911.

Estimates of the size of the New Zealand biotech sector range from 30 core biotech companies with annual income of the order of $200 million, to the Biotechnology Taskforce (350 organisations in the ‘biotech community’) to BIOTENZ income estimates of several billion dollars (including traditional food applications such as cheese, yoghurt and beer).

These alternative estimates serve different purposes and are not mutually exclusive. Authors aiming to take a comprehensive approach that promotes all New Zealand organisations that use biotech tend to include both traditional and modern applications. On the other hand international statistics and the economic literature since the mid 1980s has generally concentrated on modern biotechnology and the biotech sector is often taken internationally to refer to the population of ‘core’ private sector enterprises that conduct R&D into modern biotechnology.

11 own calculations

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

Table 4.2 Size of the New Zealand Biotech Sector

Source Year No. of


No. of


Biotech Income $



BIOTENZ Capability Survey

(Cooper, 2003)

2003 258 42 core

4000 Comprehensive survey of the biotech community including core biotech firms, natural products and suppliers.

Biotechnology Taskforce (2003)

2003 350 40 core

3900 350 organisations in the

“biotech community” includes natural product manufacturers, importers, lawyers, consultants, equipment suppliers,

government agencies etc Hopper and

Thorburn (2003)

2002 60 core 70-80 other

1200 60 “dedicated, core biotech firms …70-80 involved in biotech in a more minor way”

Statistics New Zealand (2001)

1998 /99

180 272712 475 Includes most enterprises that use modern biotech and some that use traditional biotech processes

Marsh (2001b) 1998 /99

57 166713 236 Includes only enterprises that use modern processes and conduct R&D

Marsh (2001b) 1998 /99

39 170814 205 Based on Statistics Canada definition of a biotech enterprise15

Marsh (2001b) 1998 /99

27 No. of Dedicated Biotech Enterprises (DBF)16 Kennedy


1993 5017 Broad definition of biotech

Tradenz (1994) 1994 330


Broad definition of biotech Source: various sources collated by the author

Marsh (2001b) divided users of biotech processes into four categories (see Figure 4.1) based on whether they used modern or traditional processes and whether they were creators (engaged in R&D) or simply users of biotechnology processes. The

12 Head count of employees associated with biotechnology

13 Full-time equivalents (year to 30 June ’99)

14 Head count

15 conduct R&D, have a minimum of five biotech employees and biotech expenditure of at least NZ$150,000

16 DBFs defined as enterprises that received 100% of their income from biotech. A further nine received 75-100% of their income from biotech.

17 The precise number varies depending on definition of a separate organisation, and approach taken to subsequent mergers and other organisational changes.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

term Modern Biotech Enterprise (MBE) is used to describe respondents that are engaged in R&D into at least one modern biotech process.

Modern !!!!! Traditional Modern Biotech

Enterprises (MBEs)

Traditional Biotech Enterprises

(TBEs) Creators


Modern Biotech Users (MBUs)

Traditional Biotech Users (TBUs) Figure 4.1 Classification of Biotech Respondents

Source: Marsh (2003)

Based on this definition, New Zealand’s modern biotech ‘sector’ consisted in 1998/99 of approximately 57 enterprises (15 primary product and manufacturing firms, 24 research organisations and 6 universities) employing around 1700 people. Enterprises were split fairly evenly between the private sector (30) and the public sector (27). They reported expenditure on biotech of NZ$202 million and income from biotech of NZ$236 million. This compares to enterprise income from all sources of NZ$2.1 billion, i.e. biotech provided around 11% of income for the 57 enterprises. Twelve enterprises reported that they received all of their income from biotech and so might be referred to as dedicated biotech firms. A selection of key indicators of biotech activity based on analysis in Marsh (2001b) is provided as Table 4.3.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

Table 4.3 Key Indicators of Biotech Activity in New Zealand 1998/99

Modern Biotech


Traditional Biotech Enterprises

Modern Biotech Users

Traditional Biotech Users

All Biotech Respondents

No. of Respondents and Processes

No. of Respondents 57 24 36 63 180

No. in Private Sector 30 21 21 30 102

Biotech Processes per enterprise 19 3 8 4 9

No. Involved in DNA Based Processes 42 0 9 0 51

Innovation Indicators

No. New Products last 3 yrs 114 18 27 18 180

No. New Processes last 3 yrs 105 21 45 9 177

New Products & Processes per Enterprise 3.8 1.8 2.0 0.4 2.0

No. Processes New to the World last 3 yrs 30 6 3 0 39

No. New Products Planned Next 3 years 207 24 42 21 298

No. New Processes Planned Next 3 years 219 12 24 30 288

New Products & Processes per Enterprise 7.5 1.5 1.8 0.8 3.3

No. of Patents Applications Last 5 Yrs 147 6 3 0 156

Patents Applications per Enterprise 2.6 0.3 0.1 0 0.9

Biotech Income and Exports

Total Income ($ million) 2,124 1,008 1,647 2,475 7,254

Biotech Income ($ million) 236 68 112 59 475

Biotech as % of Total Income 11% 7% 7% 2% 7%

Biotech Income per Enterprise ($ million) 4.1 2.8 3.1 0.9 2.6

Biotech Exports ($ million) 60 c1 40 c 170

Biotech Employment

Full-time Equivalents (yr to 30 June ‘99) 1,667 218 944 155 2,984

PhDs 667 c c c 703

Graduates 1,512 1,824

Graduates per Enterprise 27 10

Biotech Alliances

% Reporting Biotech Alliances 90% 50% 42% 24% 53%

% Reporting Alliance with CRI 68% 25% 17% 14% 32%

% Reporting Alliance with Business 47% 13% 17% 10% 22%

Source: Marsh (2001b).

Note: c indicates cell ‘confidentialised’ to give effect to the confidentiality provisions of the Statistics Act 1975.

A further 36 enterprises used modern biotech processes (but were not engaged in R&D) and employed around 950 people in ‘biotech based activities’, which provided income of NZ$112 million. Twenty four enterprises, employing around 220 people conducted R&D using traditional biotech processes but were not involved in modern biotechnology.

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

4.2.5 International Comparisons

The OECD has taken the lead in attempting to develop internationally comparable statistics on biotechnology. It held the first ad hoc meeting on Biotechnology Statistics in March 2000 and decided to address the lack of biotechnology statistics in OECD member and observer countries by preparing a compendium of biotechnology statistics (van Beuzekom, 2001). The compendium provides an invaluable source of information on biotech in the OECD, although the variety of definitions and data collection methods make the production of reliable comparisons pretty well impossible. Selected data from Van Beuzekom and a recent update by Devlin (2003) are summarised in Table 4.4.

Table 4.4 Biotechnology in Numbers Data


Total Number of Companies Involved in Biotech

Number of ‘Core’1 Biotech Companies

Total Number of Biotech Employees


Biotech Companies per million inhabitants,


Australia ‘99 120 3801

Belgium ‘97 52 4471 5.3

Canada ‘99 358 7695 12.2

Denmark ‘98 74 34116 9.6

Europe ‘99 1351 53511

Finland ‘99 110 8200 10.4

France ‘99 380 110002 5.8

Germany ‘99 709 279 2288453 5.9

Ireland ‘99 140 50 11.2

Israel ‘99 135 3800

Italy ‘99 45 1.1

Japan ‘99 1000 394 293584

Netherlands ‘99 300 55 5.0

Norway ‘00 44 10154 8.3

New Zealand5 ‘00 250-350 40 2727 10.4

Spain ‘99 200 22 90000 0.8

Sweden ‘99 144 2998 26.0

Switzerland ‘99 233 117 7000 12.6

UK ‘99 275 137806 7.6

USA ‘99 1273 162000

Source: van Beuzekom (2001, p. 42) and Devlin (2003, p. 11)

Notes: 1. ‘Core’ biotech firms have their main activities in biotechnology although they can be active in other fields. 2. Only covers 255 companies. 3. Covers all 709 companies. 4. Only covers 210 companies. 5. Data inserted based on Table 4.2.

6. Based on 221 companies and 1997 data. 7. Data from Devlin (2003, p. 11)

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

The 2001 edition of OECD’s STI Scoreboard (2001) included data on public funding of biotechnology R&D and patents, for the first time, see Table 4.5. Data for New Zealand have been inserted based on Rolleston (1999, p. 46) who reported that the government spent an estimated NZ$100m a year18 on biotechnology-related research ranging from genomics to processing of natural products and Wright, (2000, p. 7) who reported that around NZ$18 million is spent on research involving genetic modification (Wright, 2000, p.7).

1997 Biotechnology

R&D, 1997

$ million PPP

1997 GBAORD1

$ million PPP

1997 Biotech R&D as %


20002 Biotech R&D as %


Australia (‘98) 196.3 2533 7.8 8.0

Austria 16.8 1147 1.5

Belgium 181.7 1314 13.8

Canada 261.4 2581 10.1 10.6

Czech Republic (’99) 7.8 749 1.0

Denmark 45.2 946 4.8 10.4

Finland 94.5 1165 8.1 9.0

France 560.0 12683 4.4

Germany 1048.2 15596 6.7 3.1

Greece 6.5 431 1.5 8.3

Iceland 0.9 69 1.3

Ireland 15.0 230 6.5 0.6

Italy 32.1 7330 0.4 0.7

Netherlands 78.0 3070 2.5

New Zealand3 12.3–68.0 400 3-17 14.6

Norway4 26.8-32.2 880 3-3.7 3.7

Portugal 19.2 782 2.5

Spain 15.5 3203 0.5 3.2

Sweden5 65.6 1795 3.7

Switzerland5 16.4 1380 1.2

United Kingdom 705.1 9056 7.8 2.6

Notes: Sources (OECD, 2001, 2003a) and authors estimates.

1. GBAORD; Total Government Budget Appropriations or Outlays for R&D.

2. 2000 or nearest year available, Eurostat National Sources May 2003.

3. Author’s estimates based on published data.

4. National estimates.

5. GBAORD has been estimated.

18 Consistent with estimated spending of $127 million in 2002/3, (Ogilvie, 2003).

Table 4.5 Government Funded Biotechnology R&D 1997& 2000

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

Based on Wright’s narrower definition, New Zealand is spending around 3% of GBAORD19 on biotech R&D – giving it a middle ranking amongst the OECD members reported above. Probably a rather wider definition should be adopted suggesting that New Zealand’s proportional effort on biotech R&D is comparable with the leaders e.g. Canada, Australia Belgium, UK. This approach was taken by the OECD (2003a) which reported that New Zealand put the highest proportional effort into biotech R&D20. Not surprisingly, a rather different picture emerges in absolute terms with New Zealand’s total biotech GBAORD being the third smallest of the 21 countries listed.

Some more accurate international comparisons can be made based on data from the Statistics New Zealand biotech survey, since this was closely modelled on surveys carried out by Statistics Canada. However there are some important differences; the New Zealand definition of biotech included several additional processes and so was somewhat wider than that used in Canada; the number of biotech firms is also not directly comparable since the Canadian survey excluded firms that had less than five employees and less than C$100,000 R&D expenditure.

An approximate comparison between the two data sets is included as Table 4.6. It is based on application of the Statistics Canada definition of a biotech enterprise to the New Zealand data set; namely enterprises which conduct R&D, have a minimum of five employees and biotech expenditure of at least NZ$150,000. Data for Australia are also included although based on a narrower definition (see 4.2).

19 Government Budget Appropriations or Outlays on R&D

20 Major differences in biotech R&D as a percentage of GBAORD between 1997 and 2000 (see re probably caused by changes in definition. R&D definitions for the 2000 data vary across countries, especially with respect to inclusion or exclusion of biotechnology R&D performed by the higher education sector. The data are based on: government budget appropriations or outlays for R&D (GBAORD) for Australia, Canada, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Korea, Spain and the United Kingdom; government-financed gross domestic expenditure on R&D (GERD) for Norway; and the sum of R&D performed by the government, higher education and private non-profit sectors for Denmark, Finland and New Zealand (OECD, 2003a).

Table 4.5) a

PhD Draft 2004 Rev3 Aug 27 Final.doc 30-Aug-04 1:04 PM

In document the New Zealand Biotechnology Sector (Page 101-152)