Healthcare company MSD is to invest €11.5m in its Carlow site this year, which the company says will significantly enhance its facilities and services.

The company also said the investment shows it ongoing commitment to Carlow and the local community. It has a workforce of about 450 in Carlow.

Today's investment is the latest phase of an investment programme at the Carlow manufacturing facility that has involved pumping €312m into the sites over the past seven years. 

The site is MSD's first stand-alone human vaccine facility, producing vaccines for customers across the world. It is also leading MSD's work in the development of a new oncology treatment.

MSD, which is known as Merck in the US and Canada, has operations in over 140 countries. In Ireland, it employs over 2,000 people across its five sites in Dublin, Carlow, Cork, Tipperary and Wicklow. 

"The production facilities here in Carlow are best in class internationally and this substantial investment reflects MSD's ongoing commitment, both to Carlow and to supporting the growth and expansion of innovative product lines led by a highly-skilled Irish workforce," commented Jean-Albert Pittaluga, Site Leader at MSD in Carlow.

"Through our continued focus on innovation and new product development, we look forward to growing our manufacturing output in Ireland and offering new treatment options to patients," he added. 

Today's announcement was made during an official visit by the US Ambassador to Ireland, Kevin O'Malley, who toured the facility along with representatives from Ibec and IPHA.