Simultaneously, the head of state engaged in fruitful discussions with Moussa Faki Mahamat, the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC), ahead of the plant’s inauguration slated for Monday 18th December 2023.
Kagame also hosted President Macky Sall of Senegal, fostering conversations on potential partnerships aimed at enhancing vaccine manufacturing capacities across the African continent.
According to Rwanda’s Presidency, their deliberations extended to encompass broader continental and global issues of mutual interest.
Among the dignitaries expected to attend the vaccine manufacturing facility’s launch is the German Foreign Minister, Annalena Baerbock, reflecting the international collaboration involved in this groundbreaking initiative.
The construction of the vaccine manufacturing facility, located in Masoro, Gasabo District, commenced in June 2022.
A memorandum of understanding between the parties in 2021 paved the way for establishing the BioNTech facility in the Special Economic Zone in Gasabo District. Following months of dedicated efforts, including the shipping and installation of BioNTainers—specially designed facilities for manufacturing various mRNA-based vaccines—the factory is now operational.
Spanning approximately 30,000 square meters, the Rwandan facility is equipped with BioNTainers tailored for the production of mRNA and formulated bulk drug products. Initially set to produce 50 million vaccines, the plant’s production capacity is flexible and will be adjusted based on demand.
According to BioNTech, the facility is poised to become the first node in Africa’s decentralized and robust end-to-end manufacturing network.
Expanding its reach beyond Kigali, BioNTech announced plans in March to ship BioNTainers to Senegal and potentially South Africa, further contributing to the broader African healthcare landscape.