The Council of Agriculture’s (COA) Animal Health Research Institute yesterday inked a cooperation agreement with Germany’s Lohmann Animal Health GmbH, a major supplier of animal vaccines and feed additives, making it the first foreign company to manufacture animal vaccines in Taiwan.
The deal is expected to generate about NT$2.5 billion (US$82.9 million) in annual output value.
The signing ceremony was held at the institute and was attended by Vice Premier Mao Chi-kuo (毛治國) and Council of Agriculture Minister Chen Bao-ji (陳保基).
The global market for animal vaccines and related health products is worth about US$16 billion, more than US$4 billion of which comes from poultry vaccines, Chen said, adding that Lohmann has an ideal partner because its poultry inoculation research is globally renowned.
Lohmann managing director Bruno Kaesler said the company chose Taiwan to establish its plants in because the country has conducted quality research on poultry vaccines, and although it does not have a big market, Lohmann believes its investments in Taiwan will become an important platform for the global merchandising of new biotechnology.
Chen said Lohmann’s investment will be carried out in two phases: a manufacturing plant is to be built in the first stage, and the second stage will see the construction of a research and development center.
The council said that the plant will be built in the Pingtung Agricultural Biotechnology Park, in accordance with the high standards of vaccine manufacturing plants set by the US and the EU.
“When the phases are complete, about 35 percent of Asia’s poultry vaccinations will be supplied by Taiwan,” Chen added.
In addition to significant output value, Lohmann’s investment in the nation can also provide international cooperation opportunities for domestic research agencies to participate in vaccine research and development, Chen said.
The company is also to begin producing and marketing swine vaccines in Taiwan.