As part of a collaborative approach between industry and the state, the agreement provides a reliable framework in which public spending on medicines is sustainable and where innovative new medicines can be made available to Irish patients in a timely manner. The four-year duration of the agreement until 2020 provides patients and their treating physicians with stability in the care and availability of existing and new medicines. Under the agreement, drug pricing in Ireland is set at an average of 14 EU Member States per year. The government will also benefit from sales discounts of 5.25%, which will rise to 5.5%. The entry into the market of competing products for non-patented drugs will result in significant price reductions. In addition, the agreement contains a detailed pathway for the HSE to authorize new drugs in Schedule 1. On July 20, 2016, iPHA and the government signed a new four-year framework agreement on the provision of medicines to public health services.