Egis Pharmaceuticals Cls. will be expanding its plant in Körmend with a packaging facility, and will be a making the plant capable of developing and producing new kinds of pharmaceuticals with an investment of some 8 billion forints (EUR 24.8 million).

At the press conference held to announce the investment in Budapest, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó told exporters that 1.1 billion forints (EUR 3.4 million) of the sum invested will be non-returnable government funding.

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The politician justified the state contribution with the importance of the technologically intensive development project, adding that Egis is the largest employer in Körmend and that as a majority owner and strategic partner, Servier, the second largest French pharmaceutical producer, provides the company with a significant international background. According to Mr. Szijjártó, the Hungarian pharmaceuticals industry, which has a 150-year history, is also competitive in international comparison, and domestically operating companies have successfully exploited the increasing global demand for generic pharmaceuticals.

“The importance of the pharmaceuticals industry is increased by the fact that, as a research-orientated activity, it spends an outstandingly high proportion of its income on innovation”, he added.

The Minister highlighted the fact that pharmaceutical plants are operating in 18 settlements in Hungary, and that last year the number of people working within the sector increased by 17 percent to 32 thousand and the sector’s production value exceeded 880 billion forints (EUR 2.73bn).

“Half of the pharmaceuticals available in Hungary are produced by domestic companies, and 84 percent of their products are successfully marketed abroad”, he added.

From among the most important target countries of Hungary’s pharmaceuticals producers, the Minister highlighted Romania, Russia and Germany, adding that Hungary has the highest level of pharmaceuticals industry investment from among the countries of the Visegrád Group (V4). According to the CEO of Egis Cls, the new investment is occurring thanks to an increase in the company’s turnover.

“The Körmend pharmaceuticals plant will become capable of producing oncological products and other modern pharmaceuticals”, István Hodász added. The CEO stressed that Egis will be continuing to operate all of its Hungarian production and development facilities, and expects to successfully increase its export activities further.

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He told the press that Egis employs 4500 people, operates representations or subsidiaries in 17 countries, and sells its products in over 50 countries, with three quarters of its production going to export. According to Mayor of Körmend István Bebes (Fidesz-KDNP), Egis’s plant in Körmend is the engine of the city’s development, calling relations between the company and the local government exemplary.

“This cooperation determines both the settlement’s cultural life and its sports activities”, he added.