New Delhi: At this time of corona crisis, the Serum Institute of India (SII) on Tuesday said it will produce up to an additional 100 million COVID-19 vaccine doses for India, and low and middle income countries in 2021.
Issuing a statement, the SII said that the announcement takes forward the collaboration between SII, Gavi, Vaccine Alliance and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
“The collaboration further bolsters our fight against Covid-19. Through the avid support of Gavi and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, we will now manufacture and deliver up to an additional 100 million doses of immunogenic and safe-proven future Covid-19 vaccines to India and low- and middle-income countries in 2021,” Adar Poonawalla, CEO of Serum Institute of India told IANS.
In August, the SII had said that it will deliver up to 100 million doses by the collaboration. So with this announcement, the SII will now deliver by the partnership to up to 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine.
“The expansion follows August’s announcement of up to 100 million doses to be delivered by the collaboration, bringing the total now to be delivered by the partnership to up to 200 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines,” the SII said in a statement.
The vaccines will have a ceiling price of US$3 per dose, a price enabled by investments made by partners such as the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and SII. “This is vaccine manufacturing for the Global South, by the Global South, helping us to ensure no country is left behind when it comes to access to a Covid-19 vaccine,” said Dr. Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.
In the meantime, the SII has also started the manufacturing US biotech firm Codagenix Inc’s potential coronavirus vaccine. As per media reports, the initial phase human trials of the vaccine are expected to start by the end of 2020 in UK.