Rīga to produce genome sequencing technology

The Chinese company BGI Group opened a new genome sequencing center on November 26 at the Lidostas Parks industrial space near Riga International Airport, investing 15 million euros according to Latvia MGI Tech Representative and Researcher Alise Jakovele.

This is considered a huge success story, as Latvia will be producing high-level technology and exporting it to other European Union countries, African countries, and the Near East. Genome sequencing is a process where DNA set, or full genetic information, is extracted from a person's blood or tissue sample. The center will produce the necessary reagents.

"Everything necessary for both sample preparation and reaction process. It's a European-level milestone!" says Jakovele.

The company is also currently searching for ten new colleagues, with plans to eventually employ 80 people. The new company will take up 7000 square meter, or one third of Lidostas Parks.

"Where science and production meet, a new, complicated idea, defining disease and the most powerful player in the world – China, has specifically chosen Latvia!" said Former Latvian Investment and Development Agency Director Andris Ozols.

MGI President Duncan Yu says that the company wants to work close to the European countries.

"We wanted to produce something in Europe, for Europeans, by Europeans. That's the future of healthcare cooperation between the Chinese and Europeans," said Yu.

BGI Group employs around 7000 people in several countries. The production center in Rīga is the only one of its kind outside of China.

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