Ghana’s President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has broken ground on the manufacturing facility of DEKs Vaccines Ltd, a private sector-led consortium of local pharma firms.

The plant will manufacture about 600 million vaccines annually for malaria, pneumonia, rotavirus, and cholera with a full value chain.

“The construction of the vaccine manufacturing plant will help our nation realise the dream of becoming self-sufficient in the production and manufacture of vaccines,” the president said.

The European Investment Bank (EIB) provided a €5 million grant to kickstart the project.

The government had announced the establishment of the National Vaccine Institute, with seed funding of $25 million from EIB in July 2021. The institute will coordinate and facilitate the capacity of DEKS Vaccines and other domestic pharmaceutical companies.

The plant will fill, finish, and package COVID-19 vaccines and other vaccines against malaria and tuberculosis in two years.

"In the medium-term, that is in five years, the target is to continue the establishment of more domestic vaccine manufacturing plants in the country to manufacture vaccines to meet WHO GMP standards, with the long-term target being to produce a candidate vaccine in 10 years, using innovative technologies,” the President added.

(Writing by P Deol; Editing by Anoop Menon)