Pharmaceutical firms in South Korea have been benefiting from Cytiva's fast track facility in Songdo to train their staff and improve their processes.
The U.S.-based firm is one of the world’s leading providers of life sciences solutions and technologies for bio-pharma manufacturers.
It is working with firms such as SK bioscience and Samsung Biologics to speed up the development and manufacturing of COVID-19 vaccines.
The company is to invest 52.5 million U.S. dollars in South Korea over the next two years.
"Korea is for Cytiva a very important market. In fact, from a global perspective, Korea is our third biggest market growing fast and we definitely recognize the commitment from the government to see this as a growth engine for the Korean economy. We believe in this market and we want to support its growth over the long term."
The decision to build a plant in South Korea was announced during the ceremony in New York last week celebrating the Global Vaccine Partnership between Seoul and Washington.
"Cytiva plans to manufacture single use cell-culture bags in South Korea. These are necessary for vaccine production and are short in supply worldwide."
The large, sterile plastic bags used to grow vaccine cells are in high demand due to COVID-19 with a waiting list of up to 12 months.
Demand is growing and the firm looks to expand its service in the Asia Pacific region through Korea.
"First and foremost, we expect to create at least 300 jobs as a result of this investment as a direct consequence. We are expanding our manufacturing capacity globally. So while the facility will primarily serve the demand of our expanding Korean based customers we also expect the facility to play a role in the broader region."
The South Korean government says the investment will help the country become a new global vaccine hub. But an expert says policies should help local firms grow too.
"It's important for the government to form infrastructure for local firms to supply materials and technologies to global firms like Cytiva."
He added that establishing a structure where local SMEs can work with global companies is more constructive in the long term.
Eum Ji-young, Arirang News.