GSK To Expand Antibiotic Manufacturing in Singapore

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) plans to invest an additional £38 million (US$59 million) in its antibiotic manufacturing plant on Quality Road in Singapore, building on its initial investment of S$60(US$44 million) committed in 2012. The Quality Road plant is GSK's sole production site for amoxicillin; the active compound used in the manufacture of antibiotics for treating bacterial infections.

The new investment will be used to construct an additional downstream isolation facility for GSK's enzymatic manufacturing facility at Quality Road. GSK said this will increase production by 50% and help the company meet the growing demand for antibiotics in emerging markets.

The investment is part of GSK’s partnership with Singapore's Economic Development Board (EDB) and is a key element of the GSK-EDB 10-year Singapore Manufacturing Roadmap announced in 2012, which outlined projects for green manufacturing.

The use of enzymatic technology over chemical processes in the production of amoxicillin will also reduce our carbon footprint by up to 25%.The improved process involves fewer steps under milder conditions and uses less organic solvents, resulting in the elimination of almost 80% of the organic waste associated with the older chemical process. This sustainable approach to the manufacture of amoxicillin is consistent with GSK's commitment with the EDB to improve the efficiency of pharmaceutical and fine chemical manufacture in Singapore.

Singapore is home to GSK's Regional Headquarters (Emerging Markets & Asia Pacific), two global primary manufacturing and supply sites (Jurong and Quality Road) and a vaccines plant (Tuas).

The Quality Road site was built in 1972 and officially opened in May 1973. The site was originally built to produce a range of newly discovered semi-synthetic penicillins and had both primary and secondary production facilities to make the final dose forms. Over time, the site developed as the single source of amoxicillin and monosodium ticarcillin within GSK, which are active compounds for the manufacture of two of GSK's antibiotics.

Source: GlaxoSmithKline

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