Seegene Middle East to exclusively supply COVID-19 diagnostic tests to Kuwait
The company's local subsidiary 'Seegene MIDDLE EAST,' has signed the exclusive supply agreement with the Ministry of Health of Kuwait. The supply agreement is the largest volume procured by the Kuwaiti government since Seegene started supplying diagnostic tests to the country last year.
The agreement implies that the South Korean biotechnology firm, Seegene, has the upper hand over global competitors, given that the Kuwaiti government had been supplied with diagnostic tests from one of global molecular diagnostics companies until last year.
Under the agreement, Seegene MIDDLE EAST will be supplying the AllplexTM SARS-CoV-2 Assay, to five laboratories under the MOH for five months starting May.
The $4.8 million deal is worth six to seven times larger than that of the company's previous exports to Kuwait in the last two quarters. Although the number of COVID-19 cases in the country showed a downtrend at the beginning of the year thanks to the state-run mass vaccination program that started last December, there has been a resurgence of infections due to the emergence of COVID-19 variants.
According to 'Worldometer', on May 17, Kuwait reported 828 new COVID-19 cases, raising the total infections in the country to 291,629.
Seegene's AllplexTM SARS-CoV-2 Assay is a multiplex real-time PCR assay capable of detecting five targets including four coronavirus genes (E, RdRP, N and S gene) and an exogenous control in a single reaction, allowing highly accurate results and maximize throughput for high volume testing.
Also, the AllplexTM SARS-CoV-2 Assay can identify more targets than major competitors' products so that it can detect new COVID-19 variants. As the product can be processed without the need of extraction, it is expected to improve overall process efficiency allowing more COVID-19 tests, especially in the time where there is a shortage of extraction equipment. ■