HEALTHCARE | Staff Reporter, Korea

South Korea's pharmas reap gains from COVID-19 vaccines

Over 1,000 vaccines and therapies are in development, offering opportunities for manufacturers.

South Korea’s pharmaceutical industry is poised to grow further due to its preparations to manufacture large amounts of COVID-19 vaccines for domestic and foreign markets, according to a report from GlobalData.

The country’s pharma sector is becoming increasingly innovative and attractive to foreign investment only 18 months into the government’s $1.7b five-year biotech plan, the report noted.

Already, contract manufacturing organizations (CMOs) in the country have made agreements for prominent COVID vaccines and therapies. There are more than 1,000 vaccines and therapies in development for COVID-19, of which more than 500 are in clinical phase.

“The majority of manufacturing facilities (71%) in South Korea belong to companies with a single site in the region, which indicates the large merger and acquisition potential of the South Korean industry,” GlobalData’s pharma analyst Adam Bradbury commented.

A total of 37 companies own the 56 sites that supply domestic and other markets outside the US and EU. This diversification shields South Korea’s captive and CMO industry against changes in a single market such as protectionist policies, Bradbury added.

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