Saudi Arabia to invest $3.4 billion in vaccine, biomedical drugs sector

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Saudi Arabia’s industry minister said on Friday the country would invest $3.4 billion in the vaccine and biomedical drugs sector, according to a report from the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

The move is part of the Kingdom’s push towards achieving pharmaceutical security and making Saudi Arabia a more prominent hub for the sector, the report added.

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The announcement was made by the Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources, Bandar al-Khorayef.

The minister said that the program will be laid out in several stages, starting with vaccines and vital medicines, with focus on localizing vaccines, plasma and insulin technology – led by the ‘Vaccines and Biopharmaceuticals Industry Committee.’

The committee is in charge of setting a strategy for regulating the vaccines and vital medicines industry, developing programs and plans, and setting rules and national standards ahead of supervising its implementation.

It will aim to give Saudi Arabia the local prowess to combat future pandemics, treat diabetes patients by manufacturing insulin, and support plasma collection centers with a ‘world class factory,’ according to the report by SPA.

The second phase will focus on localizing immunological and cancer treatments technologies, where the size of the sector is estimated at more than two billion dollars annually, of which insulin represents approximately 340 million dollars, according to the SPA report.

These measures are expected to contribute to building the Kingdom's own capabilities and reduce the currently 100 percent import of vaccines and vital pharma products.

With Reuters

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