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European Commission signs second coronavirus vaccine contract

Christian Fernsby ▼ | September 19, 2020
The European Commission on Friday concluded its second contract with a pharmaceutical company for a possible vaccine against coronairus, the Commission said in a statement.
European Commission   Brussels
The contract signed with France's Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) of Britain will allow all European Union (EU) member states to purchase up to 300 million doses of the Sanofi-GSK vaccine. Moreover, member states may donate reserved doses to lower and middle-income countries.

Topics: Europe

Sanofi and GSK will also endeavor to provide a significant portion of their vaccine supply through a collaboration with the coronavirus Vaccines Global Access (COVAX) facility for lower- and middle-income countries, said the statement.

Back in August, the Commission had already signed a contract with British-Swedish pharmaceutical firm AstraZeneca for coronavirus vaccines. It continues to discuss similar agreements with other vaccine manufacturers, including Johnson & Johnson, CureVac, Moderna and BioNTech.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said that agreements with other companies will be concluded soon to contribute to a diversified portfolio of promising vaccines, based on various types of technologies.

European Commissioner for Health Stella Kyriakides said this second agreement is yet another milestone in the EU's vaccine strategy, which is expanding possibilities to ensure that EU citizens and people around the world can gradually resume their daily life.

The Commission said Sanofi and GSK are developing a so-called recombinant vaccine for coronavirus using innovative technology. The companies aim to have the vaccine available by the second half of 2021.

As of Sept. 17, there were 182 coronavirus candidate vaccines being developed worldwide, and 36 of them were in clinical trials, according to the World Health Organization. Several vaccines from the U.S., Britain, China, and Germany are in phase-3 trials.