Russia to invest $14 mln in building vaccine plant in Nicaragua

The project costs in total $20 million, Russian Health Minister said

The Russian budget will allocate $14 million for the construction of a flu vaccine plant in Nicaragua, Russian Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova said.

"Nicaragua is a most important project for our country. We do plan to open a joint venture for producing immuno-biological medications, that is, vaccines, and we are going to start with a flu vaccine," Skvortsova said at a press conference on Nov. 11.

The plant should be launched in October 2016, Skvortsova said. "The first stone has been laid at the site where this is going to be built," and the design and estimate documents have been drawn up, she said.

"The project costs about $20 million, $14 million is to be taken from Russian budgets, and the Nicaraguan budget will pay the rest. What counts most is that these funds are recoupable; with the initial level of vaccine provisions, they will be fully recouped and will come back to the country," she said.

The shortage on the vaccine market in Central America and some South American countries amounts to about 90 million - 100 million doses of each medicine, and so Russia expects the plant to be successful, taking into consideration a competitive price and the medicine's quality, she said.

"If we manage at the first stage to introduce one of our vaccines against seasonal flu, which is extremely in demand at home, and spread it around Central America and some countries of South America, this would be an excellent start for more considerable projects," Skvortsova said.

The Russian flu vaccine has already been registered and certified in Nicaragua, she said.

It was reported earlier that Skvortsova had paid an official visit to Nicaragua in early November.

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