Kodak gets $765M loan from US government to produce medicines, reportedly including hydroxychloroquine – CNET


The camera company is adding pharmaceuticals to its business.


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Kodak has been given a $765 million loan from the federal government to produce drugs in the US, reportedly including hydroxychloroquine, the malaria medicine that President Donald Trump has been pushing as a COVID-19 treatment. Trump on Tuesday directed the US International Development Finance Corporation to sign a letter of interest to provide the loan under the Defense Production Act to Eastman Kodak Company to launch Kodak Pharmaceuticals.

Kodak will rely on its “vast infrastructure, deep expertise in chemicals manufacturing, and heritage of innovation and quality” in launching Kodak Pharmaceuticals, executive chair Jim Continenza said. “Kodak is proud to be a part of strengthening America’s self-sufficiency in producing the key pharmaceutical ingredients we need to keep our citizens safe.”

Dr. Peter Navarro, assistant to the president, added the COVID-19 pandemic has brought to light “that Americans are dangerously dependent on foreign supply chains for their essential medicines.”

“Today, we are bringing together the significant resources and expertise of the private sector and US government,” said Adam Boehler, CEO of the DFC.

Kodak will produce pharmaceutical components for drugs that the FDA declares as being essential but in chronic national shortage. According to The Wall Street Journal, it will include hydroxychloroquine — even though emergency use of the drug for COVID-19 patients was revoked by the FDA in June after the World Health Organization suspended trials of it in May. Trump began taking hydroxychloroquine as a coronavirus preventative in May despite a lack of evidence saying the malaria drug worked for the virus.

Kodak didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.