Pharmaniaga falls after Malaysia announces decision to stop using Sinovac’s Covid-19 vaccine

KUALA LUMPUR (July 16): Pharmaniaga Bhd’s share price fell as much as 15.5 sen or 14.9% to 88.5 sen in Bursa Malaysia morning trade today as investors weighed the impact of Malaysia’s decision to stop administering the Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine on the outlook of Pharmaniaga, which is the sole distributor of the China-made vaccine in Malaysia.

At 11:29am today, Pharmaniaga’s share price pared losses at 90 sen with some 70 million shares traded. At 90 sen, Pharmaniaga has a market value of about RM1.18 billion based on the company’s 1.31 billion issued shares.

Yesterday (July 15), news reports quoting Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Adham Baba and other top ministry officials said Malaysia will stop administering the Covid-19 vaccine produced by China’s SINOVAC Life Sciences Co Ltd once its supplies end, as Malaysia has a sufficient number of other vaccines for its Covid-19 vaccination programme.

It was reported that Dr Adham said Malaysia’s inoculation drive will be largely anchored by the Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA vaccine moving forward. “About half of the 16 million (Sinovac vaccine doses) have already been distributed, so the rest will be used to cover second doses.

“For those who have yet to be vaccinated, they will receive the Pfizer vaccine,” he was quoted as saying by Reuters.

Pharmaniaga said in a Bursa filing on March 22, 2021 that its wholly-owned subsidiary Pharmaniaga Lifescience Sdn Bhd (PLSB) had on that day entered into an agreement with the Government of Malaysia for the supply and distribution of 200,000 doses of the Covid-19 vaccine developed and manufactured by SINOVAC Life Sciences.

According to Pharmaniaga, PLSB is the product registration holder and exclusive importer of the imported finished product in Malaysia.

“The imported finished product has been developed and manufactured by (China-based) SINOVAC Life Sciences, a subsidiary of Sinovac Biotech Ltd,” Pharmaniaga said.