By Asmau Ahmad
May & Baker Nigeria Plc has expressed optimism that the ground-breaking for the Biovaccines production facility for local manufacturing of vaccines will happen before the second quarter 2023.
The Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer of the company, Mr Patrick Ajah, disclosed this at the 2022 media luncheon on Wednesday in Lagos.
Ajah said that the ground-breaking would be a major announcement by the company in 2023.
Ajah said that Biovaccines is a joint venture between May & Baker and the Federal Government noting that they had achieved some milestones in the agreement.
He noted that the Federal Executive Council approved the first part of the MoU of Biovaccines on Sept. 14, 2022 with the Federal Ministry of Health for the supply of routine immunisation vaccines.
“This is the first/major step toward vaccine production in Nigeria, as this allows Biovaccines to commence the engagement with the chosen technology transfer partners and subsequently initiate the design and construction of the greenfield project.
“We are optimistic that the ground-breaking ceremony for the vaccine production facility will happen before Q2 of 2023.
“This major event will happen before Q2 2023, it’s going to be a major announcement. We already have a site in Ota where the factory is going to be built.
“We are just waiting for some of these processes to be activated, so now that this has been done; we are speaking with our partners, funding partners, technology partners too,” he said.
Ajah said that the company would be moving to the next level in 2023.
Biovaccines Nigeria Limited, a partnership with the Federal government, was incorporated in 2005.
The company is owned 51 per cent by May & Baker Nigeria Plc and 49 per cent by the Federal Government. It is a vaccine production and distribution company.
The objective of Biovaccines Nigeria Ltd. is to produce safe and affordable human vaccines for Nigeria and reverse the situation of high mortality from immunisable diseases.
It also plans to create a regional centre for vaccine production in West Africa and position Nigeria as a global player in the vaccine business.
Speaking on top priorities for 2023, he said that the company was in the process of completing and inaugurating its new multi-million Naira, Lily Water factory.
Ajah disclosed that the factory when inaugurated in the first quarter of 2023 would have the capacity to meet the current demands for its water with room for improvement in the near future.
Ajah said that the company would continue to invest in research and development to identify and introduce innovative products that would address the health challenges of Nigerians.