EMA is important for European cooperation
"There are not so many herbal medicines registered for a relatively small market like the Netherlands," says Emiel. “At EMA, we meet colleagues from other countries who are in the committees. They sometimes have more experience and have registered more herbs. It is therefore an important place to exchange specific experience. And the better you get to know your colleagues from other countries, the better it will be for cooperation in Europe. This is also an important reason why people at the MEB feel involved in the relocation of EMA. Your workplace is sometimes also in London, and that will now be Amsterdam.”

EMA’s relocation to the Netherlands
Emiel saw from up close that EMA employees found Amsterdam a good choice, once the choice had to be made. For him personally, there are two advantages to the relocation of EMA to the Netherlands. He explains why: "My travel time to EMA will of course be considerably shorter. I have been with EMA for 20 years. At first I crossed the North Sea with the Fokker 50, a rattlebox with two propellers. That was the connection between Schiphol and London City Airport. Another advantage is that I may now have more opportunity for consultation when the EMA office is in Amsterdam.”

Walks for EMA employees through Amsterdam
Emiel feels very involved with the people who have to move to the Netherlands. "Together with my colleague Nina van der Weiden, I started a small-scale initiative in the Summer of 2018: the EMA walks. We do this on a voluntary basis. We organize walks for EMA employees and their families in various districts of Amsterdam. There is increasing interest in this. Then they become a little familiar with the city in which they will be working. And we talk about typical Dutch customs. It is a means to let these colleagues find their way. EMA employees can register for this via the EMA intranet. Besides, we don't just walk along the typical tourist attractions.”

Special farewell
Finally, Emiel tells that he notices that the people who are in committees would like to make something special of the 'new beginning' of EMA in Amsterdam. "For the ‘Coordination Group for Mutual Recognition and Decentralised Procedures (veterinary)', for example, we would like to organize something special at their first meeting in the Spark building in Amsterdam Sloterdijk. I notice that people really appreciate that.”