Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical company, AstraZeneca announced the inauguration of a $100 million manufacturing plant in China to manufacture drugs for the domestic market. The plant, which represents one of the biggest pharmaceuticals investments in the country, is situated in Wuxi New District, 200km north west of Shanghai. The company expects the plant to eventually become an export base.
With a capacity to produce 1.5 billion tablets and 70 million capsules, the plant will employ 280 people. The company's top selling anti-ulcer drug, Losec, is also to be manufactured here.
AstraZeneca recently concluded an agreement with a Shanghai university to access DNA samples of schizophrenia patients in an attempt to link genetic variations with susceptibility to mental illness.
Despite the less-than-opaque regulations in the country, China has attracted significant investment in the pharma sector since multinational companies find that those with substantial investments in the country have tended to find the going easier.
Other companies with substantial investment in manufacturing facilities in the country are, Glaxo Wellcome and Nycomed Amersham.