 © duniabioteknologi™ 2011  Dunia Bioteknologi: [GENERAL BIOTECH] Malaysia Draws More Biotech Investments
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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

[GENERAL BIOTECH] Malaysia Draws More Biotech Investments

01/07/2011, MALAYSIA will see more investments in the biotechnology sector with the signing of four agreements at the launch of BIO International Convention in Washington DC on Tuesday.

Norway-based BioProtein Engineering AS plans to invest US$200million (RM600 million) over three years to set up a plant to manufacture high-protein or bio-protien feed in Malaysia for use in the aquaculture industry.

The company, which is presently at the site-selection process, is looking at Bintulu, Sarawak; Malacca or the eastern part of Peninsular Malaysia as potential site for the project, according to Managing Director, Arild Johannessen, who said that the facility would need to have easy access to natural gas, required for the fermentation process.

Johannessen was speaking to the media after BioProtein signed a Memorandum of Collaboration (MoC) with Pristine Oil (M) Sdn Bhd for the supply of gas, at the convention.

He said the company would initially require 50 million cu m of gas for the production of some 40,000 tonnes of the bio-protein per year, adding that its product in combination with conventional feedmeal could accelerate the growth of fish.

Meanwhile, according to Dr Bard Johansen, a consultant engaged to commercialise BioProtein's product, said the plant could be ready by 2014 if the investment decision is made this year.

One other pact was a Technology Licensing agreement between Lestari Pacific Sdn Bhd and UK-based Arter Biofuel Products Ltd, which would pave the way for Malaysia's entry into the global bio-refinery business.

Another is a build-and-lease agreement between Bio-XCell and Agila Specialities Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of India's Strides Arcolab Ltd for Agila to manufacture biopharmaceuticals and sterile injectibles in Bio-XCell's biotechnology park in Johor.

Agila plans to invest some US$40 million (RM120 million) to US$60million (RM180 million) in two customised manufacturing plants on a eight- acre site at the park.

Bio-XCell is scheduled to commence construction by year-end and the plants are expected to be completed by 2013, according to Bio-XCell Chief Executive Officer, Raja Ridzwa Raja Abdul Aziz.

Bio-XCell also inked a deal with MOX-Linde Gases Sdn Bhd to install a gas distribution system at the biotechnology park.

MOX-Linde is set to inject some US$1.7 million (RM5.1 million) under phase one of the project, with plans to invest a further RM25 million including the setting up an integrated industrial gas production and separation plant as well as a warehouse for specialty gases.

Raja Ridzwa said Bio-XCell, which has a central utility facility for chilled water, industrial steam and waste water systems, would be able to provide another critical infrastructure, the supply of industrial gas to companies at the park via the collaboration with MOX-Linde.

Meanwhile, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Texas-based Glycos Biotechnologies Inc, Richard C. Cilento Jr, who was at the convention said the company's industrial biochemical plant in the biotechnology park would likely be ready by the fourth quarter of 2012 with commercial and testing operations slated to begin in January 2013.

Glycos Biotechnologies is set to invest up to RM120 million over the first three years to make isoprene, an elastomer, from readily available renewable feedstock from the palm oil industry in the country.
Picture: GycosBio, Source: http://www.glycosbio.com/
Adapted from NST Business times and StarBiz 30 June 2011.
Source: MIDA

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