Rwanda has collaborated with Germany’s BioNTech since 2021 to establish the plant, which employs mRNA technology in vaccine development. mRNA vaccines instruct cells to produce a harmless part of the virus, training the immune system without using live viruses, ensuring a safe and effective immunization process.
The partnership was formalized in 2021 through a memorandum of understanding, resulting in the construction of the BioNTech facility in Gasabo District’s Special Economic Zone. The 30,000-square-meter plant is now operational, boasting BioNTainers designed for manufacturing various mRNA-based vaccines.
Initially set to produce 50 million vaccines, the facility’s output will be scaled up based on demand. BioNTech envisions the plant as the first node in Africa’s decentralized manufacturing network, extending its reach beyond Rwanda to Senegal and potentially South Africa.
President Sall’s visit marks his second appearance in Rwanda this year, following his commitment in July to provide 150 scholarships for Afghan girls studying in the country during the Women Deliver Conference.