The Chinese government has recognised the importance of the biologic/biosimilar market and China claims to be the largest vaccine producer in the world.
The biotechnology industry was identified as a key strategic sector in the government’s 11th Five Year Plan for 2006-2010. The biologic/biosimilar market is an integral part of the biotechnology industry.
China has 29 domestic companies which produce 49 different types of vaccines for the prevention of 26 infectious diseases. The total annual vaccine output has exceeded 1 billion doses.
In September 2009, China approved the clinical use of an A H1N1 influenza vaccine produced by the domestic company Sinovac, making it the first company in the world to be granted with a production licence for the disease.
Further reading - A detailed analysis of the Chinese pharmaceutical market is available from Espicom: The Pharmaceutical Market: China (published May 2010)