Merck, the seventh largest pharmaceutical company in the world, has announced it is to recruit 170 staff over the next three years at a new plant in Carlow in Ireland.
The £142m vaccine facility will see the firm’s Irish workforce rise to more than 620.
Enterprise minister Micheal Martin said Merck would be a huge boost for the local Carlow economy.
“The global competition for this investment has been intense and the decision to locate it in Ireland follows an international site selection study,” he said.
“This latest investment represents a very significant consolidation of Ireland’s high profile position as a successful location for substantial biotechnology global investments.”
It will be Merck’s third investment in Ireland after the firm opened a pharmaceutical plant in Ballydine, Co Tipperary and a corporate centre in Leopardstown, south Dublin.
The project will support expanding global business in human vaccines and biologics employing highly skilled workers in management, quality control, production, engineering, R&D and administration.
Dr John T McCubbins, vice president of Global Vaccine manufacturing for Merck, praised the Carlow area.
“The site for this investment, which is a critical part of Merck’s strategy for the future, required a location where we are confident the necessary skilled people, support infrastructure and track record in implementing projects of this scale exists – that is why we chose Ireland,” he said.
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