In 2012, GSK and Singapore's Economic Development Board (EDB) jointly explored strategic investment options for GSK in Singapore that would be beneficial for both parties as part of their long-standing collaborative relationship. This led to the formation of a GSK-EDB 10-year Singapore Manufacturing Roadmap that aims to guide the investment decisions and developmental work to ensure manufacturing remains a competitive edge for both GSK and Singapore. This announcement is one of the collaborative areas in this 10-year roadmap.
Opening of continuous manufacturing facilities and expansion of production building will boost capabilities to accelerate the supply of new breakthrough medicines to patients globally
SINGAPORE - Media OutReach - 5 July 2019 - GSK today opens new state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities in Singapore following a S$130m investment.
The new facilities are located in GSK's Jurong site and include two continuous manufacturing facilities, and an expansion of one of the site's production buildings. The developments will enable the site, a leading facility within GSK's pharmaceutical supply chain, to accelerate the supply of new breakthrough medicines to patients globally.
One of the new continuous manufacturing facilities is part of Jurong's R&D Pilot Plant and will strengthen the site's capability in drug manufacture by allowing faster production of APIs (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients) for clinical trials. The first New Chemical Entity (NCE) to be developed at the new facility will be Daprodustat, a new oral treatment for anaemia associated with chronic kidney disease. The new manufacturing process is expected to reduce production time of Daprodustat, enabling faster access to this medicine for patients globally.
The expansion of the production building which makes APIs for HIV medicines will strengthen GSK's capability to produce Dolutegravir, a key GSK asset for HIV treatment. The investment has enabled the renewal of critical infrastructure in the production building and has allowed GSK to test and develop digital technologies in the manufacturing process to drive productivity improvement.
The investment demonstrates GSK's commitment to Singapore as a key manufacturing and supply site for GSK's global pharmaceutical business and a testbed for advanced manufacturing technology. The investment behind the new facilities is part of the GSK-EDB 10-year Singapore Manufacturing Roadmap.
Regis Simard, President Pharmaceuticals Supply Chain, GSK said, "As one of the most innovative cities in the world, Singapore is home to an ecosystem of companies and organisations that are creating and exporting innovative solutions. Innovation is at the heart of GSK, we are glad to invest in scientific and technical excellence in Singapore to develop and launch the next generation of products which meet the needs of patients, payers and consumers."
Lim Hock Heng, Vice President & Site Director, Pharmaceuticals Supply Chain Singapore, GSK said, "Advanced manufacturing systems are pivotal for GSK to stay at the forefront of the pharmaceutical manufacturing sector. Further investment in digital manufacturing operations and processes will allow GSK to ensure efficient and high-quality production of our medicines."
Chng Kai Fong, Managing Director, EDB said, "Over the years, GSK has continually partnered with Singapore to develop advanced manufacturing technologies, such as continuous manufacturing and digital manufacturing. They have also been a strong partner in training our local talent. These efforts have supported the growth of the industry as a whole and in turn has created diverse and attractive job opportunities for Singapore."
Notes to Editors
Continuous manufacturing requires far fewer manual interventions than the traditional 'batch production' in which each stage of the production process takes place sequentially. It enables production to be quicker and at good quality standards. The flexible nature of the production process means that the volume of API produced can be adapted according to demand. There are also a number of environmental benefits from this technique, which will help to reduce the site's carbon footprint.
GSK's Jurong site was opened in 1982. The site, which now sits on a nine-hectare site, has evolved from bulk manufacture of established products in the early days to becoming a leading New Product Introductions (NPI) site within the GSK pharma supply chain. It is focused on the development of late phase New Chemical Entities (NCEs) and delivering higher value products such as very active compounds in small batch sizes. The site currently has an R&D Pilot Plant where NCEs are developed and scaled up, and three production buildings making 13 Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients for a range of medicines prescribed for the treatment of respiratory, oncology, allergy, anti-viral and neurological conditions. There are about 490 employees working at the Jurong site.