Aug 20, 2021 / 16:39

Vietnam to receive Japan’s one million Avigan pills for Covid-19 treatment

The Japanese firm will consider the transfer of Avigan drug production technology to Vietnam in the near future.

One million pills of anti-viral drug Avigan, produced by Fujifilm Toyama Chemical, a subsidiary of Japan’s Fujifilm Holdings Corp, are expected to arrive in Vietnam to support the treatment of Covid-19 patients in the country.

The information was announced during a virtual meeting between Vietnam’s Ministry of Health (MoH) and the Japanese firm on August 19.

Representing the Vietnamese side, CEO of AIC Group Nguyen Thi Thanh Nhan said that the group is ready to buy all Avigan tablets available in Fujifilm’s stock to contribute to providing free-of-charge treatment for Covid-19 patients in Vietnam.

In August, AIC Group will negotiate for the immediate purchase of one million Avigan tablets and finance the entire cost of bringing them to Vietnam.

Avigan is an antiviral drug manufactured by Fujifilm Toyama Chemical, a subsidiary of Japan's Fujifilm Holdings Corp. Photo: VNA

Besides, AIC Group and Fujifilm Toyama Chemical would agree on a plan to keep bringing more Avigan pills to Vietnam as soon as possible.

A representative of Fujifilm Toyama Chemical confirmed that they will work to soon deliver the first batch of one million Avigan tablets to Vietnam.

Besides, the Japanese firm will consider the transfer of Avigan drug production technology to Vietnam in the near future in accordance with the request of AIC Group and the MoH, the representative added.

The purchase of one million Avigan tablets is very encouraging, especially as the number of Covid-19 cases in Vietnam is rising and shows no signs of declining.

Prior to the meeting, the Vietnamese Embassy in Japan utilized all its connections in the Japanese government to access this valuable source of medicine.

The MoH had also constantly supported and coordinated to help AIC Group receive the approval of Fujifilm's leaders for the immediate transfer of all available Avigan tablets to Vietnam, although the company said that it still has many important orders in wait.

Avigan, whose generic name is favipiravir, was originally developed as a flu treatment by Fujifilm Toyama Chemical. While the results are still under review, the drug apparently showed some effectiveness against the coronavirus.

From February 2020, Japan approved Avigan. The Japanese government has called on Fujifilm to triple national stockpiles of the drug.

Japanese Health Minister Katsunobu Kato ordered Fujifilm Toyama Chemical to develop and produce this drug to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic. With efficacy and safety proven through clinical trials, Fujifilm has now secured dozens of large orders from countries through diplomatic channels.