Drugs giant, Pfizer has announced a further $130m (€100m) investment in its manufacturing facilities here, heralding a significant strengthening of its commitment to its Irish operations.
While the move is not creating any additional permanent jobs, it will significantly expand Pfizer’s Irish facilities and result in them producing more advanced and complex therapies for a number of key diseases.
Of the spend, $100m will be invested in the Grange Castle site in Dublin, with the remainder going on Pfizer’s Ringaskiddy plant, in Cork.
The Dublin investment will create additional manufacturing capacity by expanding the existing unit, which produces protein drug substance for the company’s rheumatoid arthritis treatment. A new production line will be established, at Grange Castle, increasing capacity and doubling productivity. The expanded facility will create 140 construction jobs over the next year — with a peak potential of 250 positions — and will be fully operational by 2015.
At Ringaskiddy, a specialist new capability to manufacture some of Pfizer’s newest medicines — including treatments for cancer and other future pipeline medicines — is being worked on. This, the company said, will position the site to be considered for ongoing development work on new products, both clinical and for commercial launch.
“There is an opportunity for Pfizer’s Irish sites to attract the development of new medicines, while also continuing to manufacture existing, important medicines. Our Irish operations are significant and we have excellent colleagues across our sites,” Pfizer vice president Dr Paul Duffy said.
“This additional scale and capability, arising from these investments, ensure both sites are well-placed for the future within the Pfizer global supply network,” he added.
IDA Ireland chief Barry O’Leary welcomed the investments, noting that Pfizer — since arriving in here in the late 1960s — has invested more than $7bn. The company currently employs nearly 1,500 people in its Irish manufacturing sites.
Jobs and Enterprise Minister Richard Bruton said the announcement proves that the Government is taking “the right steps” to ensure Ireland is seen as a “key location” for big multinationals, while Cork Chamber welcomed the Ringaskiddy investment.
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