Indian biotech firm plans $40m Dubai hub to fight superbugs

Wockhardt announces plan to open first manufacturing facility in Jebel Ali Free Zone in Dubai
Indian biotech firm plans $40m Dubai hub to fight superbugs
By Sam Bridge
Fri 10 Aug 2018 10:07 AM

Wockhardt, an Indian-based pharmaceutical and biotech firm, is expanding into the Middle East by setting up its first manufacturing facility in Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) in Dubai.

The $40 million facility will be specifically used for manufacturing drugs catering to global markets.

Dr Habil Khorakiwala, founder chairman of Wockhardt, said the company is poised to make a major breakthrough in the development of antimicrobial drugs to fight the emerging threat of superbugs.

"With the new facility in the Middle East, we aim to focus on our commitment in developing medicines that can fight antimicrobial resistance,” he said.

Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) - the ability of infections to resist antibiotics to work against it - is increasingly recognised as a growing global health problem.

Infections caused by antimicrobial-resistant strains of bacteria - also called ‘superbugs’ - are unlikely to respond to standard treatments resulting in prolonged illness and a greater risk to health, and severely impacting clinical outcomes, leading to further higher healthcare costs due to consumption of healthcare resources.

Wockhardt said it currently has five novel antibiotic drugs in advanced stages of global clinical development which will be effective against these superbug threats.

The 10,000 sq m facility in Dubai is equipped with best-in-class and fully automated manufacturing equipment, creating a self-sufficient environment for handling, warehousing, manufacturing operations, product testing and product stability, the company added.

The UAE's pharmaceutical and healthcare market is expected to increase by an additional AED12.4 billion from 2019 to 2021, according to a report by BMI Research.

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