Business Secretary backs research

Valneva hires 75 scientists at Livingston for Covid vaccine

Alok Sharma

Alok Sharma: visiting the Livingston plant

A laboratory in Livingston will create a further 75 jobs for scientists producing a new coronavirus vaccine.

It follows a multi-million-pound joint investment by the UK government and French company Valneva.

They will each invest £14 million in the plant to produce 60 million doses of the vaccine.

Currently more than 100 people are employed at the company’s West Lothian facility with a quarter of those working directly on a coronavirus treatment.

If Valneva’s vaccine is proven to be safe and effective in clinical trials, the expanded Livingston facility could potentially supply up to 100 million vaccine doses to the UK and internationally.

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The committed investment will be highlighted by UK Business Secretary Alok Sharma on a visit to Valneva’s facility in West Lothian today, ensuring the vaccine can be manufactured at scale to protect millions of people in priority groups, such as health and social care workers and those at increased health risk, across the UK if clinical trials are successful.

The Business Secretary will see first-hand the ground-breaking work already taking place at the Livingston manufacturing facility and hear about the significant efforts being made to increase capacity at the site.

Ahead of his visit, Mr Sharma said: “I’m incredibly grateful to our highly-skilled scientists and technicians in Livingston who are supporting the global effort to research, develop and manufacture a safe and effective coronavirus vaccine.

I’m particularly pleased that Scotland’s world class research sector is playing such an important role in developing a much-needed vaccine

– Alister Jack, Scottish Secretary

“The multi-million-pound up-front investment we have agreed with Valneva today means that their vaccine can be manufactured in quantity right here in Scotland.

“If clinical trials are successful, millions of people in priority groups across the UK will be protected by their life-saving vaccine.

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack said: “We are doing everything possible to keep people in all parts of the UK safe as we tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

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