Bio Farma opens vaccine technology transfer with Ghana

Jakarta (ANTARA) – State-owned pharmaceutical company PT Bio Farma has opened the opportunity for vaccine technology transfer with the Republic of Ghana, West Africa, as part of Indonesia’s commitment to strengthening the global health system for facing future pandemics.

Ghana is planning to use Bio Farma as a benchmark on how to store, produce, and distribute vaccines, the head of Bio Farma’s corporate communications department, Iwan Setiawan, said here on Friday.

Seven health sector delegates from Ghana were in Bandung, West Java, on Thursday to inspect and learn about Bio Farma’s work mechanism.

Bio Farma has the capacity to produce up to 3.2 billion doses of vaccines per year. At least 70 percent of them are intended for export to 135 countries.

“Bio Farma also has products that have already been used in Ghana through UNICEF, such as oral type 1 & 3 polio vaccines (bOPV). There are also vaccines sent to other countries through the bilateral mechanism, UNICEF, and businesses,” he added.

Bio Farma also managed to produce more than 5 million doses of the IndoVac COVID-19 vaccine in 2022 to meet the demand of the Health Ministry and to fulfill export opportunities.

“Moreover, Bio Farma is also conducting technology transfer for the development of the first mRNA-based vaccine in Indonesia,” Setiawan said.

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He also highlighted that Ghana is interested in carrying out technology transfer with Bio Farma.

“We are open with anyone. If there are those that fit us and they have the facility, we are ready to collaborate,” he said.

“The pharmaceutical industry has high requirements. There are several in Ghana that are ready. We are ready to conduct technology transfer if their facilities are ready,” he said.

The Republic of Ghana enacted the National Vaccine Institute Bill in 2023 and founded the National Vaccine Institution on May 10, 2023, to develop policy direction as well as vaccine production independently.

One of the delegates from Ghana, William Opare, said that his party is facing a challenge in vaccinating around 33 million Ghanaian citizens.

There are also several parents who are not willing to bring their children for immunization due to hesitancy. There is a negative rumor spreading around immunization, he highlighted.

He also lauded the immunization program mechanism in Indonesia, which is targeting a population of around 234 million in several vast islands.

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