The reason for the relocation

On 20 November 2017 the decision was taken that the European Medicines Agency (EMA) would relocate to Amsterdam in 2019. EMA is leaving London because of the UK’s decision to leave the European Union (Brexit)

It is important that EMA can continue its work despite the relocation to Amsterdam. New innovative medicines can continue to gain access to the European market without delay and EMA must remain able to act quickly if there are problems with a medicine.

To achieve this, we work hard on all fronts:

  • there will be a new building on the Zuidas
  • a temporary building is made ready for use to bridge the period until the new building is ready
  • and the EMA staff is supported in the relocation to the Netherlands

Read the fact sheet about the relocation of EMA to the Netherlands.

Seat agreement
In the bid book, the Dutch government pledged a seat agreement. It contains agreements about privileges and immunities, similar to those made with other EU agencies based in the Netherlands. The seat agreement was signed on 1 June 2018. You can read more about the seat agreement in the news item ‘The European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the Netherlands agree on Seat Agreement’.

The European Commission has also put forward a proposal to establish the seat in EMA’s founding regulation. An agreement has now been reached on this.

The benefits for the Netherlands
EMA provides employment - directly and indirectly - in Amsterdam and the surrounding area. It is therefore expected that the relocation of EMA will be a major boost for the Life Sciences-Health sector in the Netherlands. The sector that deals with new medical innovations. Think of genomics research, stem cell research and other biological research.

The government supports companies in that sector that want to relocate in order to establish themselves closer to EMA.