Moderna will manufacture its vaccines in Laval

In Laval, at the National Institute for Scientific Research (INRS), Moderna will finally set up its vaccine production facility. After waiting for several months, the pharmaceutical company announced in April that it would choose the Montreal region instead of Toronto, but the exact location has not yet been determined.

Posted at 10:12am

Isabelle Dube

Isabelle Dube
The press

Henri Ouellette-Vezina

Henri Ouellette-Vezina
The press

A year after announcing plans to build a factory in Canada, American biopharmaceutical company Moderna announced on Thursday that it has signed a purchase agreement with the National Institute for Scientific Research (INRS) for land in the Laval Biotechnology park.

“We are pleased to have found the ideal location for the proposed construction of our mRNA vaccine manufacturing facility,” Moderna said in a statement. According to Moderna, construction of the biofabrication facility is expected to begin in 2022, and the facility is expected to be operational by the end of 2024, subject to planning and regulatory approvals.

“This location offers tremendous synergy opportunities for Moderna due to its proximity to a renowned research facility and meets the needs of the project and its importance for all Quebecers and Canadians. »


PHOTO ARCHIVE PROVIDED BY CITÉ DE LA BIOTECH

The National Institute for Scientific Research in Laval, where the new Moderna factory will be located.

Moderna looks forward to working with the City of Laval on the early implementation of this project and will share further information once due diligence is complete. The company is one of two major manufacturers of messenger RNA COVID-19 vaccines worldwide – the other being Pfizer/BioNTech.

“The pandemic has shown us how important our autonomy in vaccine supply is. Moderna’s arrival in Quebec is a sign of healthcare innovation. It’s big and we’re very proud of it,” said Health Minister Christian Dubé on Thursday.

“A real privilege”

Stéphane Boyer, the mayor of Laval, was delighted Thursday that Moderna had made his final choice for his city. “Last year I had the privilege of announcing the expansion of our Cité de la Biotech to enable Laval to play a significant role in the future of public health in Canada. It is certain that welcoming a big player like Moderna into our project is a real privilege. We greet them with enthusiasm today and will follow these files with great attention,” he said on Thursday.

In the entourage of the mayor, it is argued that the choice of Laval is “not surprising” because of the “very strong” scientific center already installed there in the Cité de la Biotech, which already employs more than 5,000 people and houses around a hundred companies including the National Laboratory for Experimental Biology (LNBE).

According to our information, talks about the settlement of the American pharmaceutical company in Laval had been going on for some time, even before the arrival of the CEO of Moderna Stéphane Bancel in Montreal last April. At the time, Prime Ministers François Legault and Justin Trudeau announced during a joint press conference that Moderna had chosen the Montreal region instead of Toronto for its new vaccine manufacturing facility.

In April, Mr. Bancel explained this The press that his company “wants to have a very positive impact on the Montreal economy. “The salary level in the profession will be high. We are talking about people who have significant scientific and technical knowledge. But there will also be all the crafts that are created indirectly he argued, adding that the “ecosystem” he hopes to create around the facility will include “a whole network of crafts,” from pastry chefs to restaurateurs, and local shops.

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