RIO DE JANEIRO — The Swiss pharmaceutical group Novartis plans to build Latin America's first vaccine factory in Brazil with an investment of 300 to 500 million dollars, the financial daily Valor reported Thursday.
The plant, which will be located near the northeastern city of Recife, would begin producing vaccines in early 2014 for domestic and foreign markets, the group's Brazilian director, Alexander Triebnigg told Valor. Construction begins this year, the newspaper said.
"The decision to invest in Brazil reflects the stability and predictable nature of the country at a political and juridical level," Triebnigg was quoted as saying.
Brazil's strong intellectual property law and solid policies to prevent disease through a well regarded vaccination program also were draws, he said.
It chose a site in Goiana, a suburb of Recife, for the plant because of its access to ports, and because the state of Pernambuco offered tax incentives.
The company already has a factory in Sao Paulo and another in Rio that synthesize chemical raw materials for drugs. A third facility in the southern state of Parana makes generic drugs under the Sandoz label.
Novartis had annual revenues of 44.3 billion dollars in 2009, including a billion dollars from its Brazilian operations, Valor said.
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