NVI director defends Siam Bioscience after debate

NVI director defends Siam Bioscience after debate

National Vaccine Institute (NVI) director Nakorn Premsri showed a letter from the AstraZeneca company, issued on Monday, in an attempt to prove that Siam Bioscience has passed the evaluation process of AstraZeneca's audit team.

The audit covered issues relating to anti-bribery, anti-corruption (ABAC), supply chain security measures, human rights and financial health and ensured Siam Bioscience was fit to obtain a licence to produce the Covid-19 vaccine for the region.

"AstraZeneca selected Siam Bioscience for its regional hub to produce the vaccine and the evaluation process was executed in the second quarter of last year. The technology transfer started in October, before the government's purchasing order was placed," he said, adding that it has included an extensive evaluation of Siam Bioscience's technical and manufacturing capacity.

The letter also said that it evaluated over 60 potential partners worldwide and out of those selected 25 to join its global network, including Siam Bioscience. All partners are subject to Current Good Manufacturing Practice (CGMP) regulations and appropriate Quality Systems leading to licensure in their specific supply region, he added.

The move came in response to the opposition MPs's criticism during the ongoing censure debate yesterday which attacked the government over its choice to not to join the global Covax programme. Dr Nakorn insisted Covax doesn't offer good prices and that the majority of vaccines come from AstraZeneca.

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