President Trump said his administration will use the Defense Production Act to turn Kodak into a pharmaceutical company, an announcement he called “one of the most important deals in the history of US pharmaceutical industries.”
“With this new agreement, my administration is using the Defense Production Act to provide a $765 million loan to support the launch of Kodak pharmaceuticals,” the President said at a news conference.
Trump called it a “different field” for the company known mostly for its cameras and film, saying they had “hired some of the best people in the world.”
“It's a breakthrough in bringing in pharmaceutical manufacturing back to the United States,” Trump said.
Some context: The move is the 33rd time the Trump White House has used the DPA after facing criticism for not enacting it earlier in the pandemic.
“Remember when you were saying I didn't use it enough, I didn't use it enough?” he asked reporters rhetorically, “and now you heard it's the 33rd use. We don't talk about it all the time, we used it and we used it as a little bit of a threat, frankly, with certain companies that weren't doing as we were asking them to do, and it came through as both a threat and a usage. But this is our 33rd use of the Defense Production Act.”
The company will produce generic active pharmaceutical ingredients, Trump said, “using advanced manufacturing techniques Kodak will also make the key starting materials that are the building blocks for many drugs in a manner that is both cost competitive and environmentally safe will be competitive with almost all countries and soon with all countries.”