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AFT and SETEK sign medicinal cannabis MoU

AFT Pharmaceuticals (NZX.AFT, ASX.AFP) and New Zealand medicinal cannabis company SETEK today announce they have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to work together in the research, development and commercialisation of medicinal cannabis products.

The MoU seeks to combine, and take advantage of, AFT’s expertise in pharmaceutical development, commercialisation and distribution and SETEK’s expertise in cannabis cultivation and the extraction and processing of pharmaceutical grade cannabis compounds.

Earlier this year SETEK became the fourth New Zealand company to receive a license from the Ministry of Health to cultivate cannabis for scientific and medical research. It is developing a 100% organic cannabis propagation, cultivation, processing and manufacturing facility at Rotokawa, near Taupo.

AFT Pharmaceuticals Chief Executive Dr Hartley Atkinson said: “Medicinal cannabis represents a sunrise industry in New Zealand and is an obvious addition to our broad portfolio of prescription and over the counter medicines.

“SETEK is on track to become a leading New Zealand producer of medical cannabis and cannabis extracts. It has recently acquired a cannabis genetics company and is working towards the construction of a new, state-of-the-art medical cannabis facility that is due to commence production next year.

“These assets coupled with AFT’s expertise in the commercialisation and distribution of pharmaceuticals have the potential to create a winning combination in New Zealand’s emerging medicinal cannabis sector.”

SETEK Chief Executive Mark Mees said: “We are delighted to have reached this cooperation agreement with AFT. Hartley and his team are recognised internationally for their capabilities in taking medicines through clinical trials, regulatory approvals and then successfully distributing and selling these products in New Zealand, Australia and further afield.

“This agreement envisages SETEK and AFT each playing to their strengths. We are looking forward immensely to working with AFT to bring our shared vision to life.”

The MoU envisages the two companies jointly:

• developing business models for the development, manufacture, formulation and obtaining regulatory approval (if applicable) for selling, marketing and distribution of products;
• endeavouring to discover new medicinal cannabis opportunities;
• sharing expertise, experience and know-how; and
• cooperating in other areas of common interest.

It also envisages SETEK managing the propagation, cultivation, extraction, processing and manufacture of any medicinal cannabis products emerging from the collaboration. It will also be the exclusive supplier of these products to AFT.

AFT will meanwhile conduct any clinical trials and manage regulatory approvals of any product and will be granted exclusive right to sales, marketing and distribution of the medicinal cannabis products in Australia and New Zealand. It will also be granted the right of first refusal to do the same in other territories around the world.

Commercial arrangements between AFT and Setek will be agreed as part of any contract that emerges from the MoU.

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