The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety said Monday that it would raise the self-reliance ratio of vaccines to 50 percent this year, by adding one self-supplying vaccine to the existing list.
Korea’s self-sufficiency rate for 28 vaccines – used for national immunization and anti-pandemic, anti-terror purposes – rose from 25 percent, or seven vaccines, in 2009 to 46 percent, or 13 vaccines, last year, the ministry said.
It means the nation will manufacture 14 out of 28 vaccines domestically this year, officials said, adding that they plan to the number to 20 by 2020.
The ministry will expand its “support corps for productizing global vaccines” and enhance its operation to cope more positively with healthcare crisis resulting from endemics and biological terrorist acts amid global warming and globalization, the officials said.
Specifically, the ministry plans to activate a new R&D department within the corps and strengthen consultative services for vaccine developers in their early stages. The group will also provide customized solutions for domestic vaccine manufacturers through on-site visits.
Korea currently imports 50 percent of its vaccines. Among major domestic vaccine manufacturers are LG Chem, Ilyang Pharmaceutical, SK Chemical, EuBiologics, and Green Cross.
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