British drugmaker AstraZeneca has broken ground on its planned 200-million-dollar manufacturing facility in east Jiangsu Province, local authorities said Thursday.
Construction of the facility, which the company said is its largest ever investment in a single manufacturing facility globally, started Wednesday at China Medical City - a medical high-tech zone in the city of Taizhou, said an official with the zone's management office.
The new facility will produce both intravenous and oral solid medicines for the company's growing business in China, according to a statement from AstraZeneca - Britain's second biggest drug maker.
Construction of the site is scheduled to be completed at the end of 2013 and annual sales revenue is expected to reach 6 billion yuan (950 million U.S. dollars) after it commences operation.
The company's business in China has grown rapidly since it first established a presence in 1993.
"We believe the Chinese government's focus on the healthcare reform, its investment in improving the country's healthcare infrastructure, and its expansion of insurance coverage will continue to drive growth and demand for high-quality medicine over the long term," said David Smith, executive vice-president in charge of the London-based drugmaker's global operations.
AstraZeneca will also establish one of its three global hubs in Shanghai, according to Smith.