JAKARTA, Jan. 23 (Jakarta Post / ANN-Kyodo News): The World Health Organization has announced that it has signed an agreement to purchase up to 40 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine developed by the North American pharmaceutical giant American Pfizer as part of its initiative to provide equitable global access to Covid-19 vaccines.
Between the planned supply agreements for the Pfizer vaccine and the ongoing work to approve a candidate for the AstraZeneca / Oxford vaccine, the United Nations health agency expects to begin administering the Covid-19 vaccines by the end of February in an allocation framework designed to ensure access to low- and middle-income countries, the WHO said in a statement.
The Pfizer vaccine, developed in conjunction with German partner BioNTech SE, was the first vaccine to receive emergency validation by the WHO since the outbreak of the new coronavirus began.
Under an existing agreement, nearly 150 million doses of the AstraZeneca / Oxford vaccine candidate are ready to be shipped to countries in need once the WHO prequalification process is complete to confirm the safety and efficacy of the vaccine. .
Earlier this week, WHO Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus had criticized vaccine manufacturers for looking to profit by allowing richer countries to buy the available supply of vaccines. – The Jakarta Post / Asian News Network-Kyodo News