Glovax Biotech Corp. is set to break ground for the first vaccine manufacturing facility in the Philippines on Sept. 27, 2023 after securing commitments from local and foreign funders.
Glovax chief operating officer (COO) Giovanni Alingog said the National Development Company teamed up with Glovax with a minority share of 7.5 percent worth P150 million to start the project.
“There are foreign funders to fill up the required capitalization,” he said, adding the groundbreaking event represents a major leap towards achieving self-sufficiency in vaccine production and advancing public health initiatives in the Philippines.
A potential investor is BPI France, a French public sector investment bank that met with the NDC and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in June 2023. Glovax also tapped other sources of financing such as the Development Finance Corp. (DFC), International Finance Corp. (IFC) and IIX of Singapore. Total investments may reach P7.5 million.
Alingog said the facility would rise on a 4-hectare property in Batangas, but the initial phase will only cover 500,000 square meters.
Operations will start a year and a half after construction. The company will initially produce three kinds of vaccines—pentavalent, hepatitis and polio vaccines.
Alingog said the company would focus on strengthening its foothold of the local market in a span of seven years before exporting vaccines.
NDC said Glovax’s pioneering initiative aims to enhance national health security, reduce dependence on imports and ensure the accessibility of crucial vaccines within the country.
The collaboration is between Glovax Lifesciences Corp. (GLC), the partnership between Glovax Biotech and Korean technology provider Eubiologics Co. Ltd., and NDC.
The companies seek to bolster self-reliance and vaccine preparedness, enabling the nation to better respond to future pandemics.
“This groundbreaking event represents a major leap towards achieving self-sufficiency in vaccine production and advancing public health initiatives in the Philippines,” NDC said.
The NDC said the establishment of the Philippines’ first vaccine manufacturing facility will ensure that the necessary vaccines are readily available when needed and enable the country to prepare for the next pandemic.
The NDC board approved the project in April 2023. It also signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with GLC and the Board of Investments (BOI) in May 2023 to collaborate and leverage resources for the development of the vaccine plant in the Philippines.