Pfizer undertakes ?240m expansion at Irish plant
Pfizer undertakes ?240m expansion at Irish plant
Rumours of the demise of Ireland as a hotbed of pharmaceutical manufacturing may be premature. Pfizer has just unveiled a plan to spend ?240 million to expand its Dun Laoghaire plant in Dublin.
The expansion could create as many as 200 new jobs over the next five years, approximately doubling the size of the present workforce, according to Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern.
The project runs counter to fears voiced recently by PharmaChem Ireland, the trade group representing the interests of a lot of Ireland-based producers, that the country?s standing as a base for pharmaceutical chemicals production is under attack from companies in the Far East and Puerto Rico.
And it follows the ?650m plant-building project from US biotechnology company Centocor, announced in July, that will produce monoclonal antibody products for the detection and treatment of many human diseases as well as material for clinical trials. Meanwhile, an ?80m facility making the active ingredient for Takeda?s diabetes drug Actos (pioglitazone) is due to go on-line next month. However, earlier this year Cardinal Health cancelled plans for a ?78m plant.
The Dun Laoghaire expansion is scheduled to get underway by early next year and will significantly increase the plant?s sterile manufacturing and freeze drying capacity, according to Pfizer.
In welcoming the announcement, Mr Ahern said: ?Once again, Pfizer is demonstrating its confidence in Ireland. This expansion of the Dun Laoghaire plant is certainly good news for the continued growth of Ireland as a key strategic location for pharmaceutical manufacturing and investment and in terms of high quality job creation.?
The Pfizer Dun Laoghaire plant currently employs 150 people and produces a number of Pfizer products sold globally, including an antibiotic, a breast cancer drug, and a treatment for yeast infections.
Upon completion of this project in 2008, the plant also will be capable of manufacturing new sterile products in Pfizer?s product pipeline as they receive regulatory approval.
Pfizer?s planned expansion calls for the construction of a new freeze-drying production module, laboratories, warehousing space, and personnel and administrative support areas.
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