Thursday, February 7, 8:30 – 10:00 AM
Amcham Finland Offices
Eteläranta 6 A 8, Helsinki

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How can Finland become more attractive for R&D and innovation investment? How can we make the Finnish healthcare platform more friendly to companies?

Market access for life science companies is of concern. It may currently take up to three years for innovative medicines to get approval for a government reimbursement program in Finland. This same process is often completed in a matter of months throughout other European countries. Shortening this timeframe will help businesses prosper, as well as benefit patients in Finland.

Dr. Niels Emmerich, AbbVie’s VP and Global Head of Search & Evaluation, will be visiting Amcham Finland to explain how a large global company decides where they invest in R&D and how Finland looks from HQ’s point of view.

Päivi Sillanaukee, Permanent Secretary at Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, will give opening remarks on how she perceives Finland as a foreign investment location for Life Science companies.

Maarit Palo, Executive of Government Affairs at IBM, and Mikko Alkio, Partner at Avance Attorneys, will join the discussion as panelists.


Päivi Sillanaukee

Permanent Secretary at Ministry of Social Affairs and Health

Päivi Sillanaukee is Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, and a medical doctor with a demonstrated history of government and public sector administration. She actively participates in global health discussions, having chaired global multisectoral, multipartner HealthSecurity Alliance since 2015.

Päivi has worked as Deputy Mayor and Service Production Manager for Social and Health Care in Tampere. Sillanaukee is also chairman of the Finnish Center for Pension.

Dr. Niels Emmerich

Vice President, Search and Evaluation at AbbVie

Niels joined Abbvie in 2011 and has held several positions at AbbVie, including Global Commercial Leader for a late-stage oncology program, Director and Head of Commercial Business Development for Oncology, Senior Director and Head of Search and Evaluation, Oncology, and most recently Vice President and Global Head of Search and Evaluation.

Prior to joining AbbVie Niels was CEO of BioPheresis, co-founder and COO of immatics biotechnologies GmbH, and a strategic management consultant for McKinsey & Company. Niels attended University of Tuebingen in Germany and received a Master’s in Biology and a Ph.D. in Immunology.

Maarit Palo

Executive, Government Affairs at IBM

Maarit is the Executive of Government Affairs at IBM Finland and University Relations at IBM Nordic. Her career at IBM has spanned 30 years, during which she held multiple roles in strategy, consulting, business development and governmental affairs. Maarit received a bachelor degree in Information Technology and Communication, and an MBA in International Strategy, Marketing and Leadership

Mikko Alkio

Partner at Avance Attorneys

Mikko focuses his practice on competition law, state aid, technology law and intellectual property rights. He is considered to be one of the leading experts in the field of regulated industries, including healthcare and pharma, energy and natural resources, media and software. Mikko has co-authored a leading treatise on competition law and recently authored an in-depth analysis of the Finnish healthcare system. His most recent book discusses state aid regulation in the European Union. Mikko is a member of the Finnish Bar.

Event partners

For more information contact:

Julia Mäklin

Policy Offier
+358 50 430 3443

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