AstraZeneca has taken the next steps in its commitment to broad and equitable global access to the University of Oxford’s COVID-19 vaccine.
This follows landmark agreements with the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), Gavi the Vaccine Alliance, and the Serum Institute of India (SII).
The company has reached a $750 million agreement with CEPI and Gavi to support the manufacturing, procurement and distribution of 300 million doses of the vaccine, with delivery starting by the end of the year.
In addition, AstraZeneca reached a licensing agreement with SII to supply one billion doses for low and middle-income countries, with a commitment to provide 400 million before the end of 2020.
Together, the agreements mark the latest commitments to enable global access to the vaccine, including to low and middle-income countries, beyond AstraZeneca’s recent partnerships with the UK and US.
The company is building a number of supply chains in parallel across the world to support global access at no profit during the pandemic and has so far secured manufacturing capacity for two billion doses of the vaccine.
The agreement with CEPI and Gavi also represents the first advanced market commitment through the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator, a global mechanism co-chaired by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the World Health Organization (WHO).
The mechanism will work to ensure the fair allocation and distribution of the vaccine across the world including in low and middle-income nations. CEPI will lead development and manufacturing and Gavi will lead the procurement within the global mechanism.
“AstraZeneca and our other industry partners have a critical role to play in rapidly developing safe and effective vaccines and manufacturing the billions of doses needed to put a permanent end to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dr Richard Hatchett, CEO of CEPI.
“AstraZeneca is admirably committed to equitable global access for this vaccine, and this partnership demonstrates how the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility will bring the private, public and third sectors together to make COVID-19 vaccines available to those who need them most, for the benefit of all.”