Moderna will provide up to 500 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine to Covax, the UN-backed program that provides vaccines to people in low- and middle-income countries by the end of 2022.
The announcement comes days after the World Health Organization (WHO) added the two-dose vaccine to the list for emergency use, marking the fifth vaccine to receive such clearance.
“I am grateful to our partners Gavi and COVAX for their hard work and to the entire Moderna team for their collaboration in reaching this agreement”Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said in a statement posted on the company’s website Monday.
“This is an important step as we work to ensure that people around the world have access to our COVID-19 vaccine. We recognize that many countries have limited resources to access coronavirus vaccines. We support COVAX’s mission to ensure broad, affordable and equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines and we remain committed to doing all we can to end this ongoing pandemic with our vaccine ”, he added.
Last week, Moderna announced investment initiatives to expand global supply capacity to 3 billion doses in 2022, and raised its manufacturing supply forecast for 2021 to between 800 million and 1 billion doses.
The first batch of vaccine is expected to be delivered at the end of the year, but the vast majority, around 466 million, will be sent in 2022. The COVAX program is also receiving a boost from Sweden, which has announced that it will do so. a donation of 1 million doses of AstraZeneca.
“Sweden’s announcement that it will share 1 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines with COVAX is a superb move that needs to be repeated urgently and repeatedly by governments around the world to accelerate the equitable deployment of vaccines. in the world “, WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement on Monday.
“Such support will ensure that people in vulnerable countries, especially in Africa, can receive their second doses through the COVAX initiative. Sweden’s most generous support comes at a time when the world needs it most ”, he added.