German biotechnology firm BioNTech announced today (May 10) that it will set up a regional headquarters in Singapore.
The new Singapore headquarters will also feature a fully integrated mRNA manufacturing facility, and is supported by Singapore’s Economic Development Board (EDB).
Ths move is part of the nation’s strategy to grow the biopharmaceutical industry here, and EBD chairman Beh Swan Gin said the investment will enable Singapore to “develop capabilities in an important new therapeutic modality”.
BioNTech co-founder and CEO Ugur Sahin also noted that Singapore has an “excellent business climate” and the opening of the regional headquarters is a strategic step for the company when expanding its global footprint.”
BioNTech’s Singapore office is slated to open in 2021, which is also when construction of its manufacturing facility is expected to begin.
According to the company, the facility could be operational as early as 2023 and create up to 80 jobs in Singapore. However, no information was released about the amount the company invested in Singapore.
BioNTech said in a press release that the new mRNA manufacturing facility “will leverage cutting-edge manufacturing and digital infrastructure”, and will be “equipped to produce a range of novel messenger RNA (mRNA) vaccines and therapeutics for infectious diseases and cancer.”
The firm had partnered with Pfizer to develop a Covid-19 vaccine using mRNA technology.
The Health Sciences Authority (HSA) has assessed that the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines — the two vaccines that are currently available in Singapore — meet safety and efficacy standards.
Last month, the Ministry of Health announced that those under 45 are able to book their vaccination slots soon. This means that the Covid-19 vaccination will be made available to all Singaporeans above 16-years-old.
Featured Image Credit: World Pharma Today