Malaysian pharmaceutical manufacturer exports localized Chinese vaccines to Myanmar

Malaysian pharmaceutical company Pharmaniaga on Monday announced its entry into the vaccine export market, following the delivery of localized Chinese COVID-19 vaccines to Myanmar.

The initial order was some 200,000 doses of locally filled-and-finished CoronaVac vaccine to be delivered in several batches, manufactured by its wholly-owned subsidiary Pharmaniaga LifeScience Sdn Bhd (PLS) at its European Union certified high-tech plant. The first batch was delivered to Myanmar on Nov. 13, the company said in a statement.

Chinese pharmaceutical company Sinovac and Malaysia's Pharmaniaga in January signed an agreement on cooperation in localizing the fill-and-finish process of Sinovac's CoronaVac vaccine, a move marking a milestone in Malaysia's pharmaceutical industry.

The vaccines will be marketed in Myanmar by Hemas Mandalar Pharmaceuticals Ltd and will be supplied to two private hospitals owned by Hemas Mandalar in Yangon, with the delivery made upon the approval of the vaccine by Myanmar's Food and Drugs Authority.

Pharmaniaga group managing director Zulkarnain Md Eusope said the collaboration with Hemas Mandalar would help accelerate Myanmar's private market vaccination program.

"This opportunity to collaborate with one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in Myanmar will hopefully further strengthen our business relationship that has recently been established and perhaps develop successful new businesses by fully utilizing both of our strengths in the future," he said.

"The war against the pandemic requires a global effort that crosses all borders, and Pharmaniaga is committed with all the expertise and capabilities to support it," he said.

"We also wish to express thank you to our international partner, Sinovac Life Sciences Co., Ltd., for their continuous support, trust and technology transfer opportunity to manufacture, fill-and-finish Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine in Malaysia as well as an ongoing halal vaccine," he said.

To date, Pharmaniaga has distributed a total of 20.4 million doses of both finished and filled-and-finished Sinovac COVID-19 vaccines to 10 million or 38.7 percent of the population in Malaysia. 

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