Sinopharm to Put COVID-19 Vaccine Manufacturing Plant into Operation

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China National Biotec Group Company (CNBG), a subsidiary of state-owned enterprise China National Pharmaceutical Group (AKA Sinopharm), disclosed that its Beijing-based COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing facilities will be fully disinfected and launch the final preparation before production from May 30, as reported by National Business Daily on the same day. The annual production capacity of vaccines at the Beijing facilities could reach 100m to 120m doses upon mass production. Currently, the COVID-19 vaccine candidates developed by CNBG’s Wuhan and Beijing Institute of Biological Products have entered the phase II clinical trials, with over 2,000 people got the vaccination. It is expected that Sinopharm will have a COVID-19 vaccine product for marketing as early as the year-end 2020 or early 2021.

After the outbreak of COVID-19 in the country, Sinopharm allocated RMB1bn R&D funds to develop vaccines through two technical routes in January. Later, in April, the Wuhan and Beijing Institute of Biological Products respectively received permits for clinical trials of their COVID-19 vaccines. Prior to phase I and II clinical trials, Sinopharm also conducted vaccine pre-trials on 180 people, including management teams of the group and the subsidiaries, with a 100% positive conversion rate of novel coronavirus antibody. Moreover, the manufacturing facilities of the Wuhan Institute of Biological Products is expected to be completed at the end of June or the beginning of July. Consequently, the total annual production capacity of vaccines of Sinopharm could achieve more than 200m doses. At present, there are five COVID-19 vaccines entering phase II clinical trials in China, including the one co-developed by the Academy of Military Medical Sciences (AMMS) and CanSino Biologics [6185:HK].

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