GlaxoSmithKline, British pharmaceutical giant, announced a five-year investment programme for sub-Saharan Africa to fuel the company's growth and to serve an area with "pressing health needs".
GSK will invest up to £130 million ($216 million, 157 million euros), including £100 million to expand existing manufacturing operations in Nigeria and Kenya and build up to five new factories in Africa, it said in a statement.
"The company is currently reviewing possible locations in countries including Rwanda, Ghana and Ethiopia and the selected sites will be announced in due course and subject to government agreement," it said.
GSK added that it would train 10,000 more community health workers and create the world?s first R&D open lab "to increase understanding of non-communicable diseases and support development of new medicines for Africa".
It plans also to establish 25 academic chairs at African universities to support development of local skills and capabilities in science, engineering and public health.
"GSK today announced a series of new investments in sub-Saharan Africa designed to address pressing health needs and contribute to long-term business growth," the company said in a statement.
"This will see GSK make targeted investments of up to £130 million in Africa over the next five years, creating at least 500 jobs and contributing to the development of home-grown capabilities and skills in Africa."
GSK employs about 1,500 people in more than 40 countries across sub-Saharan Africa.