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Pharmaniaga eyes overseas expansion for Sinovac vaccine

Pharmaniaga eyes overseas expansion for Sinovac vaccine

26 Aug 2021

Pharmaniaga Bhd is looking at expanding its presence in the Southeast Asia and the African markets by supplying Sinovac Covid-19 finished vaccine manufactured by its own high-tech plant.

Pharmaniaga group managing director Datuk Zulkarnain Md Eusope said with more than 700 million population in Southeast Asia and 1.3 billion in Africa, the markets had tremendous potential for growth and would be its focus areas to supply the vaccine.

“Following our completion of distributing and supplying Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine to the federal government totalling 20.4 million doses, we are looking at further opportunities to export the vaccine overseas.

“We are in the midst of a discussion with Sinovac Life Sciences Co Ltd to facilitate the export of the vaccine to countries that face challenges in securing sufficient supply in various Southeast Asians countries as well as several African nations. Thus, this planning has allowed the group to capitalise on these apt opportunities,” Zulkarnain said in a statement today.

Acknowledging the tough competition, he said Pharmaniaga was focused on improving its operations in order to capture the immense potential in those markets.

He added that with the global surge in the number of Covid-19 cases, the business expansion was also aimed at aiding access to the vaccine supply and ensuring its timely arrival, as well as expediting the national vaccination programme rollout in those markets.

Zulkarnain said the company would continue its production at its wholly- owned Pharmaniaga LifeScience Sdn Bhd plant following the recent approval from the National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency (NPRA) to manufacture fill and finish Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine two-dose per vial.

“This will immediately ramp up the plant’s capacity from two million to four million doses per month from August 2021.

Zulkarnain said it had submitted relevant documents to NPRA for the use of Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine among children aged 12 to 17 in Malaysia, given the approval obtained in Indonesia and China.

Pharmaniaga also expects Sinovac to offer booster shots soon, particularly for vulnerable and high-risk groups of the population to maintain protection against the virus, especially from the new variants.

Zulkarnain said it remained cautiously optimistic about its third quarter ending September 2021.

It expects to record sterling performance by focusing on operational efficiencies and fiscal discipline throughout its value chain, including the supply and distribution of Sinovac Covid-19 vaccines in the country and overseas market.

For the second quarter ended June 30 2021, the group posted a net profit of RM13.9 million, up 45 per cent from RM9.6 million previously.

It recorded RM1.2 billion revenue for the quarter, a jump of 82 per cent from RM646 million in the previous year’s corresponding quarter.

This was mainly due to higher demand from the concession, non-concession and Indonesian businesses.

The significant increase in the non-concession business was attributable to the sales of the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine to the Health Ministry, it said.

Pharmaniaga declared a second interim dividend of 1.5 sen per share, payable on September 30. 

Source: NST

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