Israel Eyes Setting Up Its Own Vaccine Production Facility

YERUSHALAYIM (Reuters) -

Israel, which has until now been totally dependent on imported vaccines, called on Monday for proposals for a locally based vaccine production facility to provide itself with independent capability to take countermeasures to any new pathogens.

The country is “completely dependent on imported vaccines for any epidemics or pandemics,” a government gazette said, adding that proposals for Israeli-based manufacturing on behalf of an international pharmacological company could be considered.

Israel rolled out COVID-19 vaccinations at a world-beating rate and has championed booster shots as a means of staving off resurgences of the virus. In March, it pledged joint production of COVID-19 vaccines with Austria and Denmark.

The gazette described the initiative as a feasibility study by an Israeli inter-ministerial taskforce.

“The purpose… is to enable the team to examine the possible processes and commercial frameworks for the realization of independent ability to produce vaccines routinely, and the ability to adapt producing vaccines in the future,” said Accountant-General Yali Rothenberg, who heads the team.