GSK upgrading antibiotic manufacturing in Singapore

GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK) officials say the company is pretty excited about having been manufacturing drugs in Singapore for four decades. So much so, that CEO Andrew Witty showed up there to mark the 30-year anniversary and 40-year anniversary of manufacturing at its Jurong and Quality Road manufacturing sites, respectively. And Singapore officials must be excited as well, because Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong joined Witty. It was more than just cake and accolades. Witty announced GlaxoSmithKline would invest between S$40 million and S$60 million  ($32.8 million to $49.1 million) to upgrade amoxicillin antibiotic manufacturing at the Quality Road plant. He said the new processes will include enzymatic technology to replace existing chemical processes in production. That idea is to reduce costs and decrease the environmental impact, but maintain quality. It is part of the company's global effort to become carbon-neutral by 2050. Adding to the effort, Witty said the company would also contribute to a S$50 million joint fund with the Singapore Economic Development Board to help the city-state work to become a leader in sustainable manufacturing. GSK was not the only company to announce plans in Singapore this week. Novartis ($NVS) says it will build a $500 million biologics manufacturing plant along a traditional drugmaking facility in Singapore and turn the whole operation into one of its "technological competence centers." Release | More