Government seeking to produce Moderna vaccine
Health Minister Chen Shih-chung says the government is seeking to sign an agreement with US drug maker Moderna to manufacture its coronavirus vaccine here in Taiwan.
According to Chen, the government hopes Taiwan can be involved in frontend manufacturing of the vaccine, based on the "good relationship and mutual trust the island has with the United States at present."
Chen is warning that signing an agreement to manufacture the vaccine here will not be easy, as the US is "very protective of its vaccine technology."
However, the health minister says the possibility of Taiwan obtaining a deal to do backend production is "relatively higher" than a deal for frontend production, but even that will depend on Moderna's "global distribution plan."
The National Health Research Institutes last year began exploring possibilities of cooperation with British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca.
But that deal came to nothing due AstraZeneca's global market deployment and Taiwan's failure to meet its production demand.