Iceland, Norway and Denmark have just announced yet another joint Nordic tendering procedure. Because most of the world is experiencing problems with increasing resistance to antibiotics, this time the countries have included specific criteria to prevent resistance to antibiotics.

11 MARCH 2024

Iceland, Norway and Denmark are struggling to secure supplies of certain medicines. The challenge is increasing, particularly for older drugs. Therefore, for the third time, the procurement organisations in the three countries have announced a joint Nordic tendering procedure aimed specifically at older, well-known medicines facing supply challenges. And for the second time, in addition to price and security of supply, we have also focused on the environment. 

We have listened to suppliers and taken our outset in an international standard to combat antibiotics resistance. The international standard makes it easier for suppliers to operate in a global medicines market. 

According to the criteria, suppliers can be awarded points for being, or planning to be, certified under the AMRIA (the AMR Industry Alliance) Antibiotic Manufacturing Standard or some other, equivalent standard.

- We’ve decided to focus on requirements for antibiotics in this latest tendering procedure, because the Nordic countries want to help reduce increasing resistance. We also hope that the countries can use the same criteria in their national tendering procedures, thereby making it easier for suppliers to contribute to a more sustainable supply of medicines, said Tommy Juhl Nielsen, divisional director, Sykehusinnkjøp, Norway.


The new environmental criteria have already been presented to suppliers. This was back in June 2023, when the Nordic Pharmaceuticals Forum invited suppliers to a meeting about our draft common criteria. The countries could draw up the final criteria on the basis of this meeting. 

Subsequently, in late 2023, suppliers could participate in individual online meetings with the three countries. In this context, new suppliers have been able to learn more about the process for participating in the joint Nordic tendering procedures, and experienced suppliers have to be able to contribute further input for the procedures. 

- It has again been good to experience the great interest from the industry is generally to help promote the sustainability agenda. Without their commitment and goodwill, we’d never have got as far as we have. But I also think that we’re all aware that we have to go further to support both national and international goals for our environment and climate, said Flemming Sonne, CEO of Amgros.


This time, the countries have announced three procedures, of which two include antibiotics. The procedures cover a total of 14 medicines. Four of the medicines were not included in previous joint Nordic tendering procedures.  

All of the medicines were selected on the basis of an assessment of the extent to which they were supply-critical in the three countries. Or whether historically there have been only a few suppliers on the market.

- For many of us, this means that this time we’ve expanded the range, and the joint Nordic tendering procedures include more medicines. We hope that this will increase the number of medicines that we in Iceland can have an agreement on. We also hope that this can help improve the security of supply of medicines for Iceland, said Hulda Harðardóttir, project manager, Landspitali, Iceland.

The deadline for tenders is 30 April 2024. The new agreements will enter into force on 1 April 2025.


The AMRIA alliance has developed an antibiotic manufacturing standard.

AMRIA is an alliance consisting of more than 100 companies and organisations from the pharmaceutical industry, with the common goal to make sustainable solutions that can curb the development of antimicrobial resistance.

Certification under the AMRIA Antibiotic Manufacturing Standard demonstrates that an independent third party has verified that an undertaking has procedures in place to combat resistance to antibiotics.

Today, only the British Standards Institution (BSI) certifies undertakings for complying with the AMRIA Antibiotic Manufacturing Standard.

Read more about AMRIA 

The 14 medicines covered by the three tendering procedures are:

Piperacillin and tazobactam

Read the environmental cirteria here


Karen Torgny

Senior Specialist- Communication

I’m responsible for overall communication at Amgros, including PR. And I help to ensure that we communicate with the surrounding world in an open and engaging manner.