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Moderna's promised vaccine production facility to be built in Montreal area

American vaccine maker Moderna will announce Friday it intends to build its promised Canadian production facility in the Montreal area.
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A person draws out Moderna vaccine during a drive through COVID-19 vaccine clinic at St. Lawrence College in Kingston, Ontario, on Sunday January 2, 2022. American vaccine maker Moderna will announce Friday it intends to build its promised Canadian production facility in the Montreal area. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Lars Hagberg

American vaccine maker Moderna will announce Friday it intends to build its promised Canadian production facility in the Montreal area.

A source with knowledge of the announcement confirms the deal, which comes almost nine months after Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel signed an agreement with the Canadian government to bring such a factory to Canada.

The source asked not to be identified because they are not authorized to comment on the announcement publicly.

Canada's biomanufacturing industry declined substantially in recent years and when COVID-19 vaccines were needed, no facility in Canada was immediately able to make them.

It left Canada entirely reliant on imported vaccines and Innovation Minister François-Phillipe Champagne says Canada will never put itself in that position again.

Last year Ottawa budgeted $2.2 billion over seven years to try and reverse that decline.

It has previously committed $126 million to build a vaccine facility run by the National Research Council in Montreal, and $173 million to help Quebec's Medicago develop a COVID-19 vaccine and expand production capacity.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 28, 2022.

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