AstraZeneca aims to complete Covid vaccine supply for Vietnam by early 2022

By Thu Anh   May 27, 2021 | 10:36 am GMT+7
AstraZeneca aims to complete Covid vaccine supply for Vietnam by early 2022
Chairman and General Director of AstraZeneca Vietnam Nitin Kapoor speaks to VnExpress in HCMC, May 25, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Huu Khoa.
AstraZeneca said Wednesday it would aim to deliver all the Covid-19 vaccine doses Vietnam has ordered by early 2022 by focusing on supply chains and existing partners.

Nitin Kapoor, chairman and general director of AstraZeneca Vietnam, said the British-Swedish firm's highest priority is to produce the vaccine quickly, safely and in large volumes to help end the pandemic.

He praised the rapid growth of Vietnam's pharmaceutical manufacturing industry, saying AstraZeneca would consider conducting pharmaceutical technology transfer to Vietnam in the future if there is a company with sufficient capacity.

AstraZeneca has already done surveys on bioreactors to culture viruses for vaccine production in Vietnam to see if the country has the capability to produce vaccines for the region and the entire world, he added.

But with the world requiring a large number of vaccine doses to quickly inoculate people, the company needed to pause the surveys.

AstraZeneca has created over a dozen supply chains and collaborates with over 20 partners in 15 countries to produce billions of Covid vaccine doses. It is currently focusing on these supply chains and partners to deliver on its global committments to governments and international health organizations as quickly as possible, Kapoor said.

The company has shared intellectual property (IP) and know-how with its partners. This model is similar to what an open IP model could look like, according to Kapoor.

It has supplied over 400 million doses so far to 165 countries and territories, either through commercial deals or global vaccine access mechanism Covax. It has accounted for 97 percent of all doses supplied under the Covax mechanism.

Vietnam has been seeking to acquire 150 million doses to cover 70 percent of its population by next year. So far it has been promised 110 million within this year, including 30 million by AstraZeneca and the rest through Covax and Pfizer/BioNTech.

It has been using the AstraZeneca vaccine for its mass vaccination program started in March. It has received around 2.9 million doses, and immunized over a million people, mainly frontline Covid workers.

 
 
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