Cipla has announced that it is investing 1.3 billion South African Rand (approximately 91 million USD) to open a biotech plant in South Africa. According to Cipla’s press release, this will be South Africa’s first state-of-the-art biotech manufacturing facility for the production of biosimilars. The facility will have the necessary design capacity and capabilities and will seek regulatory approvals to supply both to the local market and to export into the rest of Africa and Europe.
According to Cipla, currently, about 1 in 50 patients in Africa have access to biologic medication. Cipla states that it is “striving to reduce this number to about 1-in-5 cancer patients through the production and supply of biosimilar medication at an affordable price.”
Construction of the plant is expected to start in early 2017, and full operations are expected to start in the third quarter of 2018. In the press release, Subhanu Saxena, MD & Global CEO of Cipla Ltd. said that Cipla’s investment in this facility will enable the creation of the first bio-cluster on the African continent.
For more biosimilar news, stay tuned to Big Molecule Watch.