Pfizer, the United States drug manufacturer, could sell 50 million doses of its COVID vaccine, developed by Germany’s BioNTech to the Indian government by the third quarter of this year.
Currently, the Indian government is in a ‘high-level’ discussion with the pharma giant which is proceeding in a successful direction, reported The Times of India.
Top government officials are believed to have negotiated with senior Pfizer executives over the main hurdle of the firm’s insistence of indemnity that will shield it from any legal action in India.
The nature of agreement on this contentious issue is not clear yet, the report mentioned.
Earlier this year, a study revealed that Pfizer Inc and BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine appeared to work against a key mutation in the highly transmissible variants of the coronavirus discovered in the UK and South Africa.
With India battling a new mutant strain of the COVID-19 virus amid the massive second wave of the pandemic, there is a growing demand for expanding the number of vaccines in India.
Currently, only Covishield and Covixin are administered in India, with both the vaccines running into short supply.
Dr Reddy’s, on May 14, administered the first dose of the newly authorised Russian vaccine Sputnik V in India. Dr Reddy’s is producing the Russian vaccine in India and it aims to supply the imported jabs in a week.
An imported dose of the Sputnik V vaccine will cost Rs 995.40 in India, according to Dr Reddy's Laboratories. Sputnik V has an efficiency of 91.6 percent.
Earlier this week, the United States Food and Drug Administration expanded the emergency use authorisation for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine to include adolescents from 12 to 15 years of age.
Apart from Pfizer, Centre had also asked Moderna and Johnson & Johnson to supply COVID-19 vaccines in India.
The government has promised to make over 200 crore doses of COVID-19 vaccines available in India by December.