TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Medigen Vaccine Biologics Corp. (MVC, 高端疫苗) on Tuesday (Nov. 24) confirmed it had signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Malaysian firm Metronic Global Bhd (MGB) to help with coronavirus vaccine distribution in the Southeast Asian nation.
The first vaccine developer to receive subsidies from the Taiwanese government, MVC is expected to enter its phase 2 clinical trial as soon as the end of the year, along with two other Taiwanese companies. The official distribution agreement with MGB will be Taiwan’s first coronavirus vaccine order from another country.
On Friday (Nov. 20), New Straits Times reported that MGB had inked an MOU with MVC to become the distributor of the latter's vaccines in Malaysia and potentially other countries. The deal will allow MGB to secure approximately 3 million doses throughout 2021 at a discounted price of US$50 per dose.
According to the report, the terms of the agreement will be finalized in December. Meanwhile, MGB must deposit a refundable US$1.5 million with MVC within one month of the MOU signing.
Speaking at an investor conference Tuesday, MVC CEO Chen Tsan-chien (陳燦堅) confirmed the report and said the company is also negotiating on potential COVID-19 vaccine deals with Thailand and Vietnam. He added that the results of the phase 1 clinical trial will be out mid-December and that the preliminary data appear very promising.
Chen explained that MVC's phase 2 clinical trial will require about 3,700 participants and be carried out at 12 different locations, such as hospitals and medical centers. He said the volunteer pool will include at least 300 teenagers and 600 seniors over 65 to ensure diversity.
Chen also pointed out that MVC will be able to produce an initial 1 million doses of its coronavirus vaccine for the Taiwanese public once the government grants it an emergency use authorization (EUA). The company's vaccine production capacity is expected to reach 10 to 20 million doses next year, reported Cnyes.