Locally made medicines have a long way to go

05-04-2022

Under the Collaboration Stream of the Modern Manufacturing Initiative, the Federal Government will provide $23 million support for the $71.2 million Australian Precision Medicine Enterprise. Currently Australia imports more than 90 percent of its medicines. Global Medical Solutions Australia will work with partners Monash University and Telix Pharmaceuticals for the production of precision medicines for the treatment of cancer, kidney disease and other illnesses here in Australia. This project and its facility to be built in Clayton, Victoria will secure Australia’s sovereign capability, while its economic impact is expected to be $461.8 million over the next 15 years. 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the investment demonstrated the Government’s commitment to building Australia’s medical manufacturing capability. 

“Making medicines like these right here means more security from disruptions, more homegrown skills and more local jobs,” the Prime Minister said.

“Building up our ability to make products like these is key to our plan for a stronger future. The pandemic has shown us more than ever before we need access to what Australians need here at home and this project will help ensure we have critical precision medicines for our patients. The Australian Precision Medicine Enterprise will help cement precision medicine development here in Australia, also helping deliver a stronger economy by growing opportunities for our medical sector and the highly-skilled jobs it supports.”

The 2022-23 Budget demonstrated the ongoing commitment to manufacturing with an additional $1 billion for the Morrison Government’s Modern Manufacturing Strategy, including an extra $750 million for the Modern Manufacturing Initiative. 

Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said these projects will help onshore technology and expertise not currently in Australia, while securing new sovereign capability.

“This project will see the construction of a new facility that will house a high energy 30 mega-electron volt (MeV ) cyclotron, which will be a new domestic source of critical radioisotopes – which are currently imported into Australia – and will be used in the treatment of cancer, kidney disease and other illnesses,” Taylor said.

“By combining research and development and the manufacture of precision medicines locally we are shoring up our supply chain resilience. These projects will also create highly-skilled jobs in the medical sector, such as radiochemists, radio pharmacists and engineers, while also reducing our reliance on overseas suppliers of vital medications.”

Minister for Health and Aged Care Greg Hunt added that believed the project would see "incredible" collaboration with the Monash Biomedical Imaging Centre, National Synchrotron and the Victorian Heart Hospital.

“Not only will this facility and the precision medicines it will help lead to better patient outcomes, it will help bolster Australia’s entire medical ecosystem,” Hunt said. “This project will help realise the incredible potential of medicines that are customised to patients, all the way from clinical trials to their local manufacture right here at home.”

The facility will directly support 42 jobs with 105 additional along the supply chain. 

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