Commission to buy up to 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine

The European Commission has on Thursday concluded exploratory talks with the pharmaceutical company Novavax with a view to purchasing its potential vaccine against COVID-19. The envisaged contract with Novavax would provide for the possibility for all EU Member States to purchase 100 million doses, and they could further purchase up to 100 million more doses.

Today's finalisation of the exploratory talks with Novavax come in addition to an already secured broad portfolio of vaccines to be produced in Europe, including the contracts already signed with 

This diversified vaccines portfolio will ensure Europe is well prepared for vaccination, once the vaccines have been proven to be safe and effective

, the EC said.

Member States could decide to donate the vaccine to lower and middle-income countries or to re-direct it to other European countries.

Novavax is a biotechnology company developing next-generation vaccines for serious infectious diseases. Their vaccine is a protein subunit vaccine which are already in phase 3 clinical trial stage.

The Commission, with the support of EU Member States, has taken a decision to support this vaccine based on a sound scientific assessment, the technology used, the company's experience in vaccine development and its production capacity to supply all EU Member States.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen tweeted todaz that vaccination would start across the EU on 27, 28 and 29 December.

The human medicines committee (CHMP) of the European Medicines Agency (EMA) announced on Tuesday that having received additional data from BioNTech and Pfizer in the context of the conditional marketing authorisation (CMA) application for a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine (BNT162b2), it has scheduled an exceptional meeting of the CHMP for 21 December.  The Commission is ready to formally authorise the first vaccine on 23 December, if the EMA gives the green light to the BioNTech/Pfizer vaccine earlier on 21 December.

Cover photo: Getty Images

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