100 million doses per year: Moderna to construct mRNA manufacturing facility in Melbourne

100 million doses per year: Moderna to construct mRNA manufacturing facility in Melbourne

Photo by Mufid Majnun on Unsplash

Up to 100 million Australian-made mRNA vaccines will be produced in Melbourne from 2024 once Moderna’s new manufacturing centre is constructed.

Announced today, the multi-billion dollar landmark agreement between the Federal Government, Moderna and the Victorian Government means the biotech will give Australia the sovereign manufacturing capability to produce COVID-19 vaccines, and any other new and innovative respiratory mRNA inoculations.

The Federal Government also hopes the partnership will make Australia a regional hub for mRNA technology development and production, bolstering the local biotechnology sector in the process.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the agreement, which is expected to create “hundreds” of manufacturing jobs too, was an important milestone in securing Australia’s future pandemic preparedness.

“This is an Australian made shot in the arm that will protect Australians from future pandemics and secure a new manufacturing capability right here on our shores,” the Prime Minister said.

“This landmark agreement means that Australia can make up to 100 million world-leading mRNA doses every year, which can protect against evolving strains of COVID-19 or new respiratory diseases that emerge into the future.

“This will be the first mRNA production facility in the Southern Hemisphere, and will ensure Australians have quick and easy access to these lifesaving vaccines.”

The Moderna facility is expected to support about 500 jobs during construction, plus hundreds of indirect jobs, with up to 200 highly skilled staff to work at the facility once it's up and running in 2024.

Minister for Health and Aged Care Greg Hunt said securing a sovereign on-shore mRNA technology was critical and would soon be a reality.

“This agreement and strategic partnership with Moderna and the Victorian Government is crucial insurance for the health of the Australian population,” Minister Hunt said.

“It means Australians will have access to the most cutting-edge vaccination technology available both now and into the future.”

Updated at 10.30am AEDT on 24 March 2022.

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