Univercells, a network of biotechnology companies based in Belgium, has expressed interest in collaborating with the Philippine government on its Vaccine Self Reliance Program (VSRP) and the development of the Virology Institute of the Philippines.
In a statement, the Department of Trade and Industry said Univercells expressed “keen interest” in partnering with the Philippines despite not having any existing operations in Asia or the Philippines.
Trade Secretary Fred Pascual met with representatives of Univercells during his 19-day European investment roadshow and had a one-on-one meeting with Quantoom Biosciences CEO Jose Castillo. Quantoom Biosciences is an affiliate of Univercells.
During the meeting in Brussels, Pascual emphasized the Philippines’ goal of ensuring its ability to address current and future health emergencies and the government’s desire to position the country as a manufacturing hub for vaccines.
The DTI is banking on adopting Univercells’ revolutionary approach in developing compact, modular, and cost-effective manufacturing facilities for vaccines and other biologics to improve the Philippines’ immunization efforts and public health outcomes by mitigating risks associated with supply chain disruptions.
Quantoom Biosciences’ approach democratizes access to vaccines and equips developing economies with tools to establish local vaccine production facilities that suit their needs.