The Japanese drug firm announced completion of the project today, explaining the new facility has capacity to make three billion tablets a year. The site will be operational in the second half of the year.
Eisai has made medicines in Suzhou since 2014 when it set up a facility for the production of injectable Methycobal (mecobalamin), which is used to treat anaemia and nerve damage.
The newly completed plant will make and package an oral solid dosage form version of Methycobal.
It will also produce the Alzheimer’s disease pill Aricept (donepezil) and the proton pump inhibitor Pariet (rabeprazole sodium) for the Chinese market.
Eisai’s existing facility will close after the new plant is operational.
The firm said, “Through the completion of the OSD production facility at the new Suzhou Plant, Eisai seeks to strengthen its in-house domestic production system in China and expand its stable supply chain.”
Eisai generated revenue of ¥49.2bn ($7.5bn) in China in the fiscal year ended March 31, 2017, up 17% year-on-year.
Methycobal revenue fell 4% to ¥17.9bn. Aricept brought in ¥6.1bn, which is an increase of 11.1%.