Exim Bank of Korea to support Human Vaccine Production in Kenya

The Exim Bank of Korea has expressed its readiness to support Kenya establish a Human Vaccine Production facility as part of the country’s ongoing efforts to enhance its healthcare capacity.
A meeting between health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe, Exim Bank of Korea director Ms. Minnie Chey and senior Korean government officials revealed that the bank has already received approval to support the initiative. Ms.Chey said the bank is working on modalities for a feasibility study that will inform the extent of the support.
Speaking during the meeting, the health CS welcomed the support saying Kenya remains committed to realise self-sufficiency in production of healthcare goods and a regional leader in pharmaceutical products. This even as he urged the Exim bank of Korea to consider extending support to local manufacturers.
“The country is well positioned to manufacture for the regional market. So, there is a need to not only support the manufacture of vaccines but other products as well” observed Kagwe.
The government is already engaging international partners involved in vaccine manufacturing to allow for technology transfer as it seeks to enhance the country’s capacity in the area of Research and Development.
The first phase of the project that includes setting up of basic infrastructure is on course with the identification of physical space within Kemsa premises in Embakasi set to host the fill and finish facility. The last phase involves the establishment of a full-fledged bulk antigen production facility and a biological products research and development centre as well as capacity building with a focus on research and development.
The decision to fast-track the development of a human vaccine facility in the country was prompted by the recent shortage of covid-19 vaccines that slowed ongoing mass vaccination drives especially across many African countries.
Among those who attended Thursday’s meeting included Bong Jun Kim, the Korean Director at the ministry of economy and finance, Young Joon Yoon, the Korean Deputy Director Ministry of economy and finance, Sangin Kang, the Korean chief liaison to Kenya, Prof. Matilu Mwau, the Senior principal scientist at Kemri and Rose Mudibo, Director liaison and administration, at the office of the cabinet Secretary.