« All News & Opportunities

28th November 2022

Wales’ Life Science’s Sector Key to UK Growth Plan

Trade Secretary Kemi Badenoch visits Wales today where she will praise Welsh companies as ‘critical’ to the UK’s life sciences sector and back them to play a pivotal role in the UK Government’s growth plans.

Badenoch will host the Board of Trade in Cardiff and launch the Board’s report on Life Sciences, which sets out the opportunities the sector offers for economic growth across all the UK’s nations and regions. Life sciences is one of five growth industries named by the Chancellor when he set out plans to change EU regulations in his Autumn Statement earlier this month.

The UK directly employs more than a quarter of a million people in the sector, with 50% of jobs located outside of London, East of England and the South East. Wales is known as a hotspot for Life Sciences companies employing more than 12,000 people and generating £2.5bn in turnover across 270 sites, an important contribution to the UK’s economy.

President of the Board of Trade and Trade Secretary Kemi Badenoch said: 

“Whether it is inventing new ways to combat cancer, diagnose disease or simplify surgery, Wales is critical to our life sciences sector.

“Three quarters of our life sciences market is exporting to the world and with a 12,000 strong workforce covering everything from PPE production to tissue regeneration, Wales is fuelling the UK’s position as a science superpower.

“This new report from the Board of Trade shows why our support to SMEs across the country to export is so important and why we are committed to ensuring the UK is a world-leading destination for life sciences investment.”

Today’s Board of Trade’s report ‘Life Sciences: What’s next for this top UK sector?’ marks Life Sciences Day and calls on the Department for International Trade (DIT) to further support this innovative sector by:  

  • Redoubling efforts to encourage Research & development and manufacturing
  • Targeting lucrative markets by utilising DIT’s international footprint
  • Support scaling up and levelling up across the UK to ensure that businesses across regions and nations have access to export support.

The Board will hear from Welsh manufacturer and exporter Dulas Ltd, which has supported immunisation and health efforts across the world by providing the first mass-produced solar-powered vaccine refrigerator. DIT has supported Dulas to access international markets for export – helping the country, and the world, build back better from the pandemic.

Today, the Trade Secretary also announces twenty-eight leading business figures as the first Export Champions for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, who will provide advice to UK businesses on how to break into international markets. Each Champion has been selected because they have a successful international trade track record.

Finally, she will visit PCI Pharma, who recently expanded its manufacturing facility in south Wales with a multi-million-pound investment. The expansion will help the company keep pace with global demand for the production of cancer therapies and create around 200 jobs once the facility is at full capacity.

Members of the Board of Trade are champions for exports and investment to deliver economic growth and prosperity across the whole of the UK. Domestically, they engage with business and people across the four nations to drum up support for trade and help companies export, and internationally, they help Britain campaign for free and fair trade. The Board of Trade celebrated its 350th anniversary in September this year.

List of Export Champions: 


  • Paola Dyboski, Dr Zigs
  • Rosie Davies, Rees Machinery Group Ltd T/A RMGroup
  • Sina Yamani, Yoello
  • Alison Lea-Wilson MBE, Halen Môn / Anglesey Sea Salt
  • Tee Sandhu, Samosa Co
  • Kamal Ali, My Salah Mat
  • Stephen Davies, Penderyn
  • John Pattinson, Air Covers

Scotland (identified and appointed jointly with Scottish Development International):   

  • Lee Hanlon, Cesscon Decom
  • Luis Gomes, AAC Clydespace
  • Hassan Heshmat, Hydro-C
  • Katie Birrell, Nairn’s Oatcakes
  • Alistair Walker, Walker’s Shortbread
  • James Varga, DirectID
  • Martin Murray, Dunnet Bay Distillery
  • Anna White, The Scotland Shop
  • Poonam Gupta, PG Paper
  • Ian Stevenson, Cyacomb
  • Federico Charosky, Quorum Cyber
  • Shahida Imani, Chromacity
  • Robert Kennedy, Optos

Northern Ireland:  

  • Alan Lowry, Environmental Street Furniture
  • Roger Johnston, Axial3D
  • Gabriel O’Keefe, Kiverco
  • Martin McKary, Texthelp
  • Patrica O’Hagan, Core Systems
  • David Ausdahl II, Lowden Guitars
  • Susie Hamilton-Stubber, Burren Balsamics