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Gqeberha sterile manufacturing facility wins insulin contract

Home Manufacturing & Processing Pharmaceuticals Gqeberha sterile manufacturing facility wins insulin contract

THE local subsidiary, Aspen SA Operations and Aspen Pharmacare Holdings have concluded an agreement with the leading global manufacturer of human insulin, Novo Nordisk, for the technical transfer and commercial manufacture of human insulins.

The collaboration allows for local production of human insulin in South Africa, to cater to the needs of people with diabetes on the African continent. Through the local conversion of the insulin into finished dose form vials by Aspen, the companies will leverage opportunities together, to ensure a reliable supply of products to populations that need it. The collaboration aims to supply over 1 million patients (16 million vials) in 2024 with further upscaling to over 4 million patients in 2026.

Aspen will manufacture these vials at its existing sterile facility in Gqeberha. The Group invested R6 billion in building these facilities and related technologies. The production of insulin will utilise the sterile infrastructure including some utilised for Covid-19 vaccine production. Aspen will deploy approximately 250 people for this production which is due to commence at the beginning of 2024. The collaboration will also reduce the transport-related carbon footprint by 68%.

Aspen group chief executive, Stephen Saad, said, “Aspen has a clear objective and focus to capacitate Africa and give quality affordable access to critical medicines from sites based in Africa that are also capable of exporting to global markets. We are proud to be associated and working with Novo Nordisk, a global leader in many areas including diabetic insulins. We hope to build off this initial foundation with Novo Nordisk to further expand access. In addition, this development is important to retaining critical skills and developing new talent on the continent and to diversifying global supply chains to ensure security of supply and improved patient access. To this end, the technical and skills transfer agreement is key and an endorsement of Africa’s role in the regional and global pharmaceutical supply chain. We thank Novo Nordisk for this demonstration of their confidence in Aspen, together we can positively impact the millions of patients most in need.”

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