Canadian taxpayers were on the hook for $323 million that went towards a Quebec vaccine facility that was never built and never produced a single vaccine.

The startling revelation came from a House of Commons health committee meeting Monday regarding Medicago, a now defunct company in Quebec City that received $323 million in federal subsidies – double the amount initially reported.

Despite the money, its vaccine never made it to market.

As reported by Blacklock’s Reporter, a factory executive chose not to disclose the details of the contracts.

Medicago CEO Toshifumi Tada refrained from divulging contract details. 

Despite having two agreements with the Canadian government, Medicago failed to deliver any Covid vaccines under an Advance Purchase Agreement, costing taxpayers $150 million. 

“We didn’t deliver anything,” Tada admitted in his testimony. 

The company also secured around $173 million in research subsidies through Innovation Canada’s Strategic Innovation Fund, but Tada was unable to provide specifics, citing confidentiality constraints.

The lack of transparency around this deal has been a point of frustration for opposition MPs. 

“You won’t tell this committee of Parliament how much money the Government of Canada actually, in the end, transferred to you?” Conservative MP Rick Perkins asked.

“I have a confidentiality obligation,” Tada replied.

Conservative MP Gérard Deltell stressed the importance of transparency with taxpayer money.

Medicago closed its operations in Quebec City Feb. 3, at the cost of 600 jobs. The health committee was informed that its parent company, Mitsubishi Chemical Group, faced challenges in scaling vaccine production. 

Conservative MP Stephen Ellis expressed confusion despite participating in the case throughout its tenure. 

“I think our job sitting around this table is to come to a better idea of what happened to Canadian taxpayers’ money. I don’t feel like that is forthcoming. That is a shame,” he said. 

The Department of Public Works acknowledged it “took a risk” in subsidizing Medicago’s plant, reported Blacklock’s. 

 “We took a risk of putting contracts with various suppliers for enough vaccines for all Canadians,” said Joelle Paquette, director general of the public works department.

The federal government signed a non-refundable advance purchase agreement with Medicago in October 2020 despite no assurance of vaccine approval from Health Canada.

Health Minister Mark Holland defended the government’s actions, citing the urgent need for vaccines during the pandemic.

Despite receiving approval in 2022, Medicago failed to mass produce its vaccine following the World Health Organization’s (WHO) denial of its emergency use application due to the company’s association with a prominent tobacco company. 

The federal health committee voted on November 8 to investigate why Medicago received a $323 million contract without any net benefit to taxpayers.

Conservative MP Stephen Ellis brought forward the motion after learning the federal government paid $150 million to Medicago for 76 million doses of the Covid vaccine — one that never made it to market. 

“Three hundred million dollars of taxpayer money was wasted and…was hidden deep in a document,” Ellis told the committee, as reported by CBC