Construction on a pharmaceuticals formulation plant began in 1998 in Jeddah, on the Red Sea coast of Saudi Arabia.
The plant was owned by Saudi Arabian-Japanese Pharmaceutical Company (SAJAPHCO) as part of a joint venture (JV) established in 1996 between Japan International Development Organization (JAIDO), Sankyo, Yamanouchi Pharmaceutical, Marubeni Corporation and Tamer, a Saudi Arabian drug wholesaler.
Completed in 2000, the plant produces two Sankyo formulations, an anti-inflammatory drug Loxonin and Acecol-ACE inhibitor, and three Yamanouchi products, Josamycin-macrolide antibiotic, Omnic-benign prostatic hyperlasia, and Hypoca for the treatment of hypertension. All of the products are manufactured under license.
The plant also carries out contract bulk pharmaceutical production for other Japanese drug companies.
With backing from both the Saudi Arabian and Japanese Governments, the project was first conceived in July 1996 and received capital amounting to SAR72m. This was shared out between FMT Industries (51%), a wholly owned subsidiary of Tamer (15.47%), JAIDO (15.47%), Sankyo (15.47%), Yamanouchi (15.47%) and Marubeni (2.59%). The Japanese companies hold a total of 49%.
As a long-established pharmaceuticals importer on behalf of many pharmaceuticals manufacturers, Tamer has been appointed to act as the sole agent for marketing and distribution in Saudi Arabia, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries and Yemen.
The plant was completed in Q4 1999 and trial formulations began in August of that year. Full-scale production and marketing was expected to begin in 2000.
With a total cost of SAR180m ($48m), the plant was constructed by Japanese contractor JGC (Arabia) and Saudi Arabian construction company FREYSSINET SAUDI ARABIA.
A 30,000m² site was chosen for the project. Juffali Airconditioning Mechanical and Electrical Co (JAMED) carried out the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) work.
The plant was designed to produce 90 million tablets and 75 million capsules a year. The majority of these were intended to be diabetes and hypertension medication.
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