Moderna has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of the Republic of Kenya to establish Kenya as the location for its mRNA plant.
Moderna announced the $500 million investment in October 2021 but did not disclose where the messenger RNA (mRNA) manufacturing facility would be built. Now, with the assistance of the US Government, the firm has entered into a MoU to confirm that the facility will be located in Kenya.
The aim of the facility is to be able to produce up to 500 million doses of vaccines each year, and the investment could also be expanded to include fill/finish and packaging capabilities at the site. According to Moderna, it is working towards filling doses of its COVID-19 vaccine in Africa as early as 2023, depending on demand.
“Battling the COVID-19 pandemic over the last two years has provided a reminder of the work that must be done to ensure global health equity. Moderna is committed to being a part of the solution and today, we announce another step in this journey – an investment in the Republic of Kenya to build a drug substance mRNA manufacturing facility capable of supplying up to 500 million doses for the African continent each year,” said StÃ©phane Bancel, CEO of Moderna.
“With our mRNA global public health vaccine program, including our vaccine programs against HIV and Nipah, and with this partnership with the Republic of Kenya, the African Union and the US Government, we believe that this step will become one of many on a journey to ensure sustainable access to transformative mRNA innovation on the African continent and positively impact public health.”
The facility will ensure as a country and region that Africa can respond to the demands of needing vaccine commodities, including future treatments for respiratory viruses and tropical diseases.
In Moderna’s mRNAÂ pipeline, there are 28 vaccine programs including vaccines against respiratory viruses, vaccines against latent viruses and vaccines against threats to global public health.