Arkray Industry Inc., a subsidiary of Arkray Inc. of Japan, is expanding operations in the Philippines with plans to manufacture hemoglobin A1c test cartridge and assemble reverse transcription-polymerase reaction testing machines.
The local subsidiary said it would also increase the production capacity of urine and blood analyzers, blood glucose test meters and its reagents, as it widened its networks and partnership with local associations, distributors, and agencies.
“We have been seeing signs of recovery. The expansion plans of companies such as Arkray is a testament of the country’s resiliency even in times of adversities. Truly, we can really make things happen for foreign and local investors for them to grow their businesses here amidst challenges,” said Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez.
The company recently ventured into producing RT-PCR test kits its Batangas after the project was approved by the Philippine Economic Zone Authority in September.
“And with the increased testing capacity of our country, the demand for testing has also increased. This policy is an opportunity for the government to regulate the prices of testing to make it more affordable and accessible to all Filipinos,” Lopez said.
The company employs 500 people and will likely hire more workers as it activates its expansion program.
The Food and Drug Administration issued certifications for these test kits upon validation testing conducted by Research Institute for Tropical Medicine. The evaluation report indicated that the RT-PCR Test Kits are 100-percent sensitive and 100-percent specific with a 95-percent confidence interval.
The RT-PCR test kits have a short turnaround time of 1.5 hours and an accuracy rate of 90 to 98 percent. The kits, however, are produced only on a per order basis with the total production output depending on the demand of clients to maintain accuracy considering its short shelf life.
“Arkray’s recent business activity also reaffirms our competence to host activities in the production of critical medical products and devices in the country. Even during the height of the pandemic, the Philippines did not impose any export restriction of these products but rather helped capacitate the manufacturing firms to enable them to support both domestic and foreign demand” said Trade Undersecretary Ceferino Rodolfo.