The new facility includes drug substance manufacturing along with fill/finish and packaging


Moderna to build new production site in Africa. (Credit: Mufid Majnun from Pixabay.)

Moderna is set to build a new manufacturing facility in Africa to produce up to 500 million doses of its mRNA-based vaccines annually, including its Covid-19 vaccine.

The US-based drugmaker will invest up to $500m in the new facility, which includes drug substance manufacturing along with fill/finish and packaging operations.

Moderna said that it will start the process of deciding the country and location for the new manufacturing facility.

Moderna chief executive officer Stephane Bancel said: “Since Moderna’s founding in 2010, our mission has been to make a transformative impact on human lives through our medicines.

“After a decade of pioneering the development of our mRNA platform, we have been humbled to play a critical role in combatting the Covid-19 pandemic globally with our mRNA vaccine. We view Moderna’s work as only just beginning.

“On behalf of our growing team, partners and shareholders, we are determined to extend Moderna’s societal impact through the investment in a state-of-the-art mRNA manufacturing facility in Africa.”

Moderna, together with its partners, has ramped up the global capacity and has supplied more than 500 million doses of its Covid-19 vaccine to date.

The new investment is the latest development aimed at expanding the company’s global network with an additional manufacturing site in Africa.

In August this year, Moderna signed an MoU with the government of Canada to build a new manufacturing facility to start domestic production of mRNA vaccines in the country.

Bancel added: “While we are still working to increase capacity in our current network to deliver vaccines for the ongoing pandemic in 2022, we believe it is important to invest in the future.

“We expect to manufacture our Covid-19 vaccine as well as additional products within our mRNA vaccine portfolio at this facility.”

In a separate development, Denmark, followed by Sweden and Finland have paused the use of Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine for people below 18 years, based on reports of possible rare side effects including myocarditis.