By Estel Grace Masangkay
French pharma giant Sanofi has formally inaugurated its new production facility at King Abdullah Economic City in Saudi Arabia.
The company took two years to complete the 35,000 square meter facility, which will produce its first commercial batches in February next year after completing product assessments and regulatory approvals. The facility will start out manufacturing antibiotics, diabetic treatments, cardiovascular drugs, and protective drugs against blood clots. Sanofi said it will export the products throughout the Gulf.
Philippe Luscan, Sanofi EVP of Global Industrial Affairs, said, “We are delighted today to open this facility, together with King Abdullah Economic City and the Saudi Arabia General Investment Authority as our strategic partners. As a pioneer, we built a plant designed to produce up to 20 million packs of locally-made high quality medical treatments, which will benefit the needs of the regional community, through an adapted life cycle management.”
Mohanud Helal, Secretary General of the Economic Cities Authority, said, “We are very delighted to inaugurate Sanofi's production plant in King Abdullah Economic City, which is a testament to the long-term partnership between KAEC and anchor investors in the pharmaceutical industry. This inauguration also positions KAEC as a hub for pharmaceuticals and life sciences industries in the region.”
At least 100 additional jobs will open next year with the start of the facility’s operations, according to Sanofi. However, the company did not reveal the amount of its investment in the building.
Mr. Rayan Qutub, CEO Industrial Valley, lauded Sanofi’s commitment to the country and to Industrial Valley in particular. “Sanofi is a key anchor tenant in achieving our vision as the new Pharmaceutical hub in the region. We are committed to providing all the required support to drive the accelerated growth of Sanofi in the region.”
The French drug maker isn’t the only one attracted to the country’s pharma market. Earlier this year, U.S. pharma giant Pfizer announced it has partnered with Tabuk Pharmaceuticals to commercialize its products in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.