Industry minister foresees biomanufacturing revival, including vaccines — eventually

Industry minister says Canada's biomanufacturing sector, shrunken from decades of privatizations and closures, will once again be a world leader -- but not soon.

The Canadian Press

OTTAWA — Industry Minister François-Philippe Champagne sees a future for Canada as a leader in biomanufacturing, including vaccines — but not soon.

In a speech at the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal, Champagne says he hopes a COVID-19 vaccine can be produced at home in the "medium term" as a federal investment strategy starts to bear fruit.

Multiple COVID-19 vaccine-makers sought domestic partners last year to help produce their products, but Canada's biomanufacturing industry has shrunk considerably in the last half-century.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced last month that Canada has a new contract with Maryland-based Novavax to eventually churn out doses of its vaccine at a new National Research Council facility going up in Montreal.

But construction won't wrap up until the summer and production will likely begin in late fall at the earliest, long after Canada expects to import enough doses to vaccinate the entire population.

 

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