Moderna to build a new vaccine plant in the UK


Newspaper La Jornada
Thursday June 23, 2022, p. 18

London. Moderna will build a new research and manufacturing center in Britain to develop vaccines against new strains of covid-19 and other respiratory illnesses and help improve preparedness for any future pandemics.

Under the deal, Moderna will make a minimum investment of $1.35 billion, Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s spokesman said, adding that it would have the capacity for 250 million vaccines a year if needed.

The facilities are expected to start producing vaccines in 2025, with the UK committing to buying Moderna’s vaccines over the next decade.

Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccines, which use messenger RNA (mRNA) technology, were among those used in Britain to deal with the crisis and allow Johnson to reopen the economy after strict lockdowns.

Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said the priority was to develop a vaccine that combines renewed boosters against covid, influenza and respiratory syncytial virus.

“By building a plant in the UK, we are also providing the British government – which has a long-term partnership with us, with this deal – the ability to be prepared for the pandemic,” Bancel told Reuters in an interview.

The British Ministry of Health indicated that mRNA technology could be applied to other areas, such as cancer, influenza, dementia and heart disease.

Our investment will secure arm shots against some of the most resilient viruses out there, putting us at the forefront of fighting future threatsPrime Minister Johnson said in a statement.

The European Union wants to promote the production of vaccines and medicines in Latin America, investing more in the region and sharing technologies and regulatory practices, said the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen.

The health partnership we launch today will create stronger and more robust health systems in Latin Americahe stated.

The association will bring more funding to the Latin American pharmaceutical industry, in addition to the 890 million euros ($942.4 million) that the EU and its countries are already investing in health projects in the region together with partners such as the Inter-American Development Bank.

More will come. We are currently defining our financial support for the biotechnology sector in Cuba and Mexicovon der Leyen said, adding that the commission was exploring possible investments also in Chile, Costa Rica, Uruguay and Colombia.

The head of the European Commission announced that the bloc is also committed to sharing health technologies with Latin American countries, conducting joint research and cooperating in strengthening the regulatory environment.

The global balance of the pandemic is 6 million 323 thousand 318 deaths and 541 million 32 thousand 546 infections, according to Johns Hopkins University.

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