In a significant stride towards self-sufficiency in vaccine production, Bangladesh is set to establish its maiden vaccine plant through a partnership between the state-owned Essential Drugs Company Limited (EDCL) and US-based Dyadic International. The momentous memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed on Wednesday, marking the inception of a cutting-edge vaccine facility poised to redefine the nation’s healthcare landscape.
Professor Ehsanul Kabir, the Managing Director and CEO of EDCL, along with Mark A. Emalfarb, CEO of Dyadic International, formally sealed the groundbreaking deal at the Health and Family Welfare Ministry’s conference room within the secretariat. Under the terms of this collaboration, Dyadic International will extend its technical expertise to EDCL, facilitating the production, preservation, and assurance of vaccine quality.
Highlighting the transformative potential of this venture, Health Minister Zahid Maleque affirmed that the plant’s foremost endeavour will be the production of Covid-19 vaccines. The move is expected to significantly mitigate the nation’s reliance on external vaccine procurement, which witnessed the import of 360 million doses worth Tk 40,000 crore during the pandemic, many of which were donated.
Minister Maleque unveiled the future plan for the vaccine plant’s expansion, sharing that in addition to Covid-19 vaccines, the facility will roll out a comprehensive range of twelve other vaccine variants, including routine EPI vaccines, bolstering the nation’s immunisation capabilities in phases. The proposed site for this groundbreaking initiative is a spacious 7 to 8-acre tract of land in Gopalganj.
With a commitment to advancing public health, the Health Minister disclosed that the Asian Development Bank has pledged funding of $300 million to fortify the establishment of the vaccine plant. This financial backing is expected to facilitate the plant’s gradual ramp-up, with partial production anticipated within two years and full-scale operations envisioned within four years.
Bangladesh’s stride towards vaccine self-reliance holds the promise of not only augmenting its healthcare infrastructure but also cementing its position as a regional leader in pharmaceutical advancements. As the nation gears up to establish its maiden vaccine plant, a new era of health security and immunisation resilience dawns on the horizon.
MoU signed with US company to set up vaccine plant [Internet]. New Age [cited 2023 Aug 14]. Available from: https://www.newagebd.net/article/204878/mou-signed-with-us-company-to-set-up-vaccine-plant