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Lonza chooses Switzerland for new plant

The chemicals company currently employs 4,900 people in six countries

(Keystone Archive)

The Lonza chemicals group has chosen Switzerland over the United States as the location of a new SFr100 million biopharmaceuticals plant.

The decision is a boost for Visp, canton Valais, which trumped towns in the US and the Czech Republic that were also in the running to host the plant.

The new plant will be an extension of Lonza existing site at Visp, and will create 100 jobs.

"The new plant forms part of a global expansion programme in our biotechnology custom manufacturing services," said René Imwinkelried, head of Lonza Biotec.

The life sciences firm estimates that commercial operations at the site should start by the first quarter of 2005.

Lonza manufactures and supplies active chemical ingredients to the pharmaceuticals and agrochemical industries.

The firm, headquartered in Basel, is active in biotechnology research, and currently employs 4,900 people in six countries. Last year, it had sales of SFr1.87 billion.

swissinfo with agencies

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