Zurich-based Achiko AG (SWX: ACHI) and PT Indonesia Farma Medis created PT Achiko Medika Indonesia to produce a test platform for COVID-19 in Indonesia - Photo by the Company

JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – Achiko AG (SWX: ACHI) and PT Indonesia Farma Medis created PT Achiko Medika Indonesia to produce a test platform for COVID-19 in Indonesia, the Switzerland firm announced last week. Both will have a 50 percent stakes in the joint venture company, which will involve in the production, distribution and marketing of the testing platform developed from Project Gumnut.

“This joint venture is a major milestone for Achiko and a precursor to an imminent filing for product registrations and approvals in Indonesia,” said Steven Goh, CEO of Achiko in a written statement on Feb. 12.

At the same day, the company also signed a contract with a distributor medical and diagnostic devices, PT Mitra Asa Pratama, drug-maker’ PT Pharos Indonesia, and other companies. It said, the test kit will be integrated with Achiko’ Teman Sehat (Health Buddy) mobile apps to address the growing demand for testing in the country.  

Phase 1 testing for Project Gumnuts has been concluded, achieving preliminary values of 91 percent sensitivity and 85 percent specificity. Further optimization studies are currently being conducted in Spain and Indonesia to meet the World Health Organization’ standards.

Next steps are the completion of regulatory approvals, getting the technology into test kits and moving them into the market as soon as practicable, wrote the statement. Currently, the country with over 270 million people recording the highest number of cases, rates of positivity and fatality rates in Southeast Asia.

“As COVID-19 cases across Indonesia have surged past the one million mark and the contagiousness of the disease continues to severely disrupt the economy, the need for mass market testing becomes apparent,” adds by the CEO of Indonesia Farma Medis, Khairudin Gustam.

Earlier, the minister of health, Budi Gunadi Sadikin, said Indonesia needs 426 million of COVID-19 vaccines to reached ‘herd immunity” for around 181 million people accordance to World Health Organization provision. So far, the government has secured China’ Sinovac powder vaccines and still hunt for another drugs, including United States’ drug-maker Pfizer and British’ AstraZeneca.

To reached the targets, he said, the government has ensured to meet the number of vaccines. Currently, he said, the government has signed a contract for 125 million doses of vaccine from Chinese health company, Sinovac, with an additional option to 100 million doses of vaccines and 130 million total doses of vaccine from US’ Novavax.

In addition, the government will also sign a contract with AstraZeneca to obtain up to 100 million doses of vaccine and another 100 million other doses which will also be imported from BioNTech-Pfizer. Sadikin stated, a 50-million-dose deal with AstraZeneca would be finalized before end of 2020, and the same size with Pfizer in the first week of January.

“Obtaining vaccines from these four sources aims to ensure the resilience or security of vaccines coming to Indonesia in the quantities needed. The very large number of COVID-19 vaccines is expected to come to Indonesia soon,” he told the media.

In total, said Sadikin, Indonesia will receive 660 million doses of vaccine including from CEVI and Gavi, a public – private global health partnership. In the press conference held today, he also reported, that the vaccination program will be given free of charge to all citizens. He asserted, that health workers will be the first to be in the vaccination stage.

“In Indonesia there are 1.3 million people (health workers) in 34 provinces. The second stage we will give to public workers. This around 17.4 million people,” said the former deputy minister for state own enterprises minister.

Written by Editorial Staff, Email: theinsiderstories@gmail.com