December 15, 2017 / 11:53 AM / in 6 months

EU drugs agency says move to new HQ may take longer

LONDON (Reuters) - The European drugs agency said on Friday its new headquarters in Amsterdam may not be ready by the time it has to leave London due to Brexit because the building will not be completed.

With a staff of around 890, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) has been based in London since 1995. It learnt in November it would be moving to Amsterdam after Brexit because it must be headquartered in an EU country.

It said on Friday its tailor-made Vivaldi building was planned for completion in November 2019 and that the Dutch government would offer temporary premises from Jan. 1 2019, or earlier if requested, until the new building is ready.

A spokeswoman for the city of Amsterdam on Friday said there had been no change in its plans for EMA. She said, the building will be completed in two stages and should be ready to accommodate all employees at the beginning of 2020 as promised.

Britain is due to leave the EU on March 29, 2019.

Reporting by Kate Holton and Bart Meijer; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg

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