The Finnish government on Thursday approved the establishment of Finnvac Oy, a state-owned vaccine research company.
State ownership will be 51 percent, said a press release from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health (STM), which is responsible for the ownership management.
The minority owner will be the holding foundation of Tampere University, the second largest university in Finland.
The new company will merge the existing commercial vaccine research functions of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) and the Vaccine Research Center of Tampere University.
According to the press release, the intention is to secure and strengthen Finnish capabilities in vaccine research and to ensure that “well researched, effective and safe vaccines would be available to Finland”.
Additionally, the aim is to prepare for health hazards such as pandemics and to increase research investments in Finland.
About 8,000,000 euros (9,000,000 U.S. dollars) has been received in the state budget for 2021 for the establishment of the company, which is intended to cover initial capital and pre-formation costs, said STM.
Finland maintained domestic vaccine production until 2003. Since then Finland has relied on imported vaccines.